STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – You’ve opened a small business on Staten Island and you’re trying to promote it on social media. Now, you’re wondering if your marketing initiatives on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or some other social media platform are paying off for your enterprise, or if your efforts are actually working at all.
“If this scenario sounds familiar, you’re not alone,” says John J. Amodio, chairman of SCORE-Staten Island. “As SCORE explains, ‘Understanding the effectiveness of your social media marketing efforts upon your business involves more than just counting your Facebook business page likes and Twitter followers.’”
To help you achieve a better understanding of social media marketing metrics, and what you should – or should not – be paying attention to, Amodio and SCORE-Staten Island are offering the following guidance:
To begin with, you need to understand that superficial “vanity metrics” rarely provide an accurate window into how well your strategy is working.
What really matters is how well your content is:
• Attracting and keeping the interest of readers, viewers, or listeners.
• Getting shared.
• Generating leads.
• Making sales.
And that requires paying attention to metrics that shed light on whether your social media marketing tactics are helping you reach your business goals.
FIRST THINGS FIRST: ESTABLISH GOALS!
Metrics are only meaningful when they relate to clear goals. How else can you say your efforts are succeeding or failing?
In his book, “500 Social Media Marketing Tips,” social media consultant Andrew Macarthy recommends setting “SMART” goals: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-specific.
Here is a rundown of how you should consider each of the “SMART” goals:
Do you want to:
• Increase brand awareness? By how much?
• Gain more subscribers to your e-newsletter? How many more?
• Increase sales revenue from your website’s online store? By what percentage?
Which analytics tools do you intend to use to measure how close your marketing activities are getting you to those goals? Are they capable of giving you meaningful data?
Be realistic when setting your goals. A little stretch can motivate you and your team, but if you set the bar too high, you could end up feeling defeated and uninspired.
Your social media marketing goals will serve your business best when they align with your company’s overall goals and vision.
In what amount of time do you aim to achieve your goals? For example, increase Facebook page reach by 10 percent in three months; get 20 new email subscribers each month until the end of the year; or increase online sales by 12 percent in six months.
EXAMPLES OF MARKETING METRICS THAT MIGHT MATTER TO YOU
As you tap into the various tools that can give you insights into your performance on social media platforms, some of the many metrics that might help you assess the success of your efforts include:
• Mentions and tags of your brand online; how to discover this will vary from one platform to the next.
• Click-throughs on your links.
• Engagement with your content – comments, shares, etc.
• Conversions on paid ads.
• Clicks on call-to-action buttons, such as “learn more,” “buy now,” etc.
SOCIAL MEDIA ANALYTICS TOOLS
Besides Google Analytics and the insights tools within the individual social media platforms, there are resources that provide metrics for multiple platforms in one place, such as Hootsuite, Buffer. Buzzsumo, and others.
WHERE TO TURN FOR MORE MARKETING EXPERTISE
For guidance as you craft and execute your social media marketing, contact SCORE-Staten Island to talk with a mentor. Their experience in all areas of starting and running a business can benefit you every step of the way on your entrepreneurial journey.
About SCORE-Staten Island
SCORE-Staten Island is dedicated to fostering a vibrant small-business community within its New York City borough by providing cost-free education and confidential mentoring to both aspiring and established entrepreneurs. Headquartered at 950 West Fingerboard Road, Grasmere, in the iconic Staten Island Advance Building, the organization is Chapter 476 of the nationwide SCORE, a nonprofit association and resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). For additional information, or to schedule an appointment, SCORE-Staten Island may be visited at https://statenisland.score.org; telephoned at 718-727-1221; emailed at info@SCORESI.org, and visited on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/SCOREStatenIsland.