To increase conversions from your social media strategy, you’ll need to measure your social media impact.
Of course, it’s important to track conversions because that is ultimately what you are trying to achieve. However, focusing strictly on measuring conversions will not tell you how to improve. This only tells you how your current strategy is doing.
Measuring your social media impact will tell you how you are doing in specific areas of your strategy. These areas are engagement and reach.
Knowing where you stand and working to improve your engagement and reach will inform your social media approach and ultimately help to improve your conversion rates.
(We’ll talk about how to measure your conversions from social media channels in an upcoming article.)
How to Measure Social Engagement
Engagement is the measurement of social media activity from users that involves you.
This includes retweets, article likes, clicks on your links, comments, and mentions. The trick here is to get people talking about you and what you are posting.
This helps to move them past the awareness stage, and into the interest and desire stages of the purchasing process. If others are saying good things about you, it gives you social credibility. Social credibility means that your opinion matters.
You’ll want to track how many of each type of interaction you receive. You’ll also want to track where these interactions are coming from. What types of posts and articles are generating more interaction?
Twitter offers its own analytics area that you can use to track how many mentions you’ve had, your top mention, your top follower, retweets, favorites, clicks, etc. You can easily export all of this data directly to excel, by selecting the export button on the top right the tweets section.
Here are some of Twitter’s handy-dandy engagement graphs:
Facebook has an insights area that helps you to track your clicks, comments, shares, likes, and total engagement, and follower demographic information. It also includes some handy-dandy graphs:
How To Measure Social Reach
Reach is the measurement of how many people you are speaking to. You’ll do this by tracking your followers, page likes, views, and subscribers. What you’re aiming for here is to increase the number of people who are listening to you over time.
The more people who listen to you, the more influential you will become. The more influential you are, the easier it is to sell your product.
Here’s a graph from Facebook’s Insight section:
You can also track your impressions on Twitter (the number of times users saw a tweet)
Twitter’s follower analytics:
Become A Social Media Influencer
What makes an influencer an influencer and how do you become one? Here’s a chart to explain:
- 0 -7.5K Followers
- Pursue followers in your target market
- Be a good member of the Gift Economy: Retweet, Favorite, Twitter Chat, Offer something that improves consumer lives
- Build audience trust
- Do not talk about your products (often)
- You’re promoting the thought leadership of others
- Post 60% original, 40% curated
- 7.5K-15K Followers
- Pursue Influencers and followers in your target market
- Continue to be a good member of gift economy
- Continue to build audience trust
- Do not talk about your products (often)
- Working on your own thought leadership
- Post 70% original, 30% curated
- 15k+ Followers
- You are an influencer!
- Always continue to be a good member of gift economy
- The audience trusts you!
- Sell and promote your products and those of others
- You are a thought leader
- 100% original content
Until you have a certain amount of social credibility (followers and engagement around your brand), your opinion does not have much merit.This is why you’ll want to start with posting 40% curated content.
Here, you’re focusing on letting people know why they should care about what you have to say. You’re offering them something of value. Share content from those who have more social credibility than you, and post your own content 60% of the time.
Let’s face it, the social media world is a world of people pushing their agendas. How do you make your tailfeathers flashier than everyone else’s? Selflessness!
You won’t want to talk about your products much at all in your social media posts until you are an influencer. Being an influencer means that you’ve spent your time in trenches, building relationships, giving more than you expect to receive, and participating in the social media community. It means that your opinion matters to people.
If you share too much too soon about yourself, people will tune you out (Same goes for real life!).
They’ve got to know that there will be value for them in what you’re saying in order to continue listening.
Improve Reach & Engagement
Market Segmentation Messaging
Just like you would with any of your email campaigns or advertisements, you’ll want to make sure that your social media messaging is in line with what your core audience segment wants to hear.
If you’re sharing information that helps to improve their lives in some way, they will stick around to see what else you’ll offer, see you as a credible source of knowledge/entertainment, and be more inclined to purchase from you.
You’ll also want to track who you are attracting on your social media channels. It will not serve you if your message is speaking to customers who most likely will not have a need for your services.
You’ll want to make sure that you focus on providing information that is valuable to your core audience segment.
You can use tools like Facebook’s insight area, Twitter’s Analytics or even SocialBro for Twitter to give you information on the demographics of who you are attracting on your social media channels.
Facebook’s Insights area tells you the gender, location, and language spoken by the people who have liked your page:
In Social Bro’s free version, you can search by industry, or filter by various demographic options. You can also create custom graphs of your demographics with upgraded versions of the software.
Twitter’s Analytics on audience interest:
Social Caterpillars and Social Butterflies will both want to take an hour, once or twice a week to search for people to follow within their target demographic to increase reach in your social media channels.
Some businesses have chosen to purchase followers. Some would argue that this pushes them to the next bracket of social status, where they can work and continue to engage. Others would argue that the followers you are purchasing are not going to engage because they may not be interested in your product.
You will need to gauge the best approach for your business. There’s no harm in small tests. You will ultimately want to focus your efforts, however, on pursuing your target demographic organically.
Since Social Nectars (influencers) have 15K followers or more, having an influencer of your target market on your side will also help you to increase your reach.
It’s possible to have an influencer follow you at any stage you may be in, but once you are at Social Butterfly status, you’ll want to actively pursue and follow influencers of your audience segment. The reason being that Influencers will be more likely to engage with you if you are established to a certain degree.
Give Social Gifts
As a member of the social media gift economy, be sure to give gifts to your listeners. These gifts need to offer something of value and leave them better off than where they started. This includes giving selfless compliments.
You’re not a radio talk show host trying to fill dead air. You’re trying to make an actual enhancement to the lives of your listeners. Don’t fill them with fluff, fill them with social nectar.
Increasing Conversions Takes Patience
Waiting to see an increase in your social media impact is like watching plants grow, but it just takes patience. The investment of time and energy in nurturing your crop will eventually reap some awesome conversion benefits.
Let your engagement and reach metrics be a guiding light on your social media strategy. If you are not increasing numbers in these areas over time, then you may need to tweak your approach. Consider posting more often, or at different times.
Is your content in line with what your audience wants to see? Finding your sweet spot may take some trial and error. Allow yourself room to play around with different ideas and see what works for your business.
Social media strategies are very much like dating. Being forward with your agenda will most likely turn people off. You need to have patience and be open to having a relationship with those you are interacting with, instead of just focusing on what you want to get out of the relationship.
Just like in a relationship, you’ll want to weigh where you’re at from time to time, but you will have to give it time and space to develop. Trying to weigh out where you stand all of the time will not give you accurate information, as relationships ebb and flow.
Track your progress and watch trends over time. This will tell you how you are doing overall and give you information on where you may need to shift your strategy.