People write books on this, but the core principle is so basic it’s staring us right in the face. I’m going to be brutally honest here. If you can’t measure your ROI for social media then it’s because you don’t know what you should be measuring. You’re doing it wrong.
Take a step back.
Without a plan and clear goals to begin with, you can’t have a way of measuring what you consider a positive result. Without knowing the goal, you can’t measure success. These are the basics. Having no plan is like throwing stuff against the wall to see what sticks. Pointless.
You’d be surprised at some of the goals we’re tasked with, but if it’s measurable nothing’s impossible. The great myth that ROI is hard to measure is one that invariably comes down to a lack of clear objectives back in the beginning.
If we have goals we can create ROI.
If you want to increase footfall through the door of your shop or venue, that’s your goal and that’s what you measure. If you want to offer product specific customer service – you measure messaging and/or engagement. If you want more hits on your website or more people to your online check out, that’s your objective and that’s what you measure. If you want to get your products in certain stores you build communities and approach buyers with a genuinely interested fan-base, and when it works there’s your ROI. If you want to divert some of your ad budget into social media brand exposure, you measure targeted reach, etc.
We help a lot of clients with this. It’s an essential part of the social media strategy we create for them. It’s up to a brand to decide what its goals are, then we can figure out how we’ll execute this and how the client can measure success. By driving a high proportion of content creation efforts and messaging in this area (or in support of your audience so you can push those objectives when the time is appropriate) it works towards the overall goal. An integral part of our monthly reporting is working towards those core goals.
ROI isn’t difficult to measure; we just have to know what we we’re measuring.