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Social Media Management ROI: Learn the most important metrics to track

Lithium Alumni (Retired)

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Those of us in Social Customer Care often ask ourselves, “Why am I spending money on multiple tools with tons of features, yet still end up having to pull everything into spreadsheets manually and spending all day sending emails because I don’t have true visibility into our activities?”


Many of us have had to hack together a solution to best mitigate the gaps; this is not the part of the job that inspires or drives us. The right social media management tool allows us to spend time where it’s most needed: on driving and improving our strategy while strengthening relationships with and learning about our customers.


We sat down with Lithium’s Social Solutions Consultant, Adam Price (@AdamP), and Lead Business Value Engineer, Grigor Kotzev (@GrigorK), to discuss how to measure your performance and boost efficiency as a social marketer.


Q: What are the top 3 metrics social marketers should be tracking?

Adam: It ultimately depends on the goals of the company. Most marketers want to have a good idea of 1. Brand voice lift (impressions), 2. Customer engagement (engagement rates) and 3. Conversions either through tracking website traffic or paid social ads.


While these metrics can be valuable, it is critical that the metrics are baselined by both internal performances over time and external performance over time vs. competitors in a similar vertical. The ultimate goal of metrics is to accurately articulate the value of your activity. The value of a metric, like engagement rate, can only be perceived if you understand what you are measuring it against. And if you have defined tangible growth goals to your team and management.


Think about efficiency as a key metric. When the big question “What is the ROI of this activity?” comes up, efficiency can be overlooked, but saving time is producing ROI. We find that a social manager spends an average of 3.5 hours a day on social management. One of the primary goals of a social platform should be reducing the manual time that can be better automated by improving workflow and communications internally.


Q: What metrics do you see marketers following that are not very useful?

Grigor: It all depends on what outcomes they are trying to get from social media. The metrics which are not useful are those which are not aligned with their expected outcomes. For instance, if you are looking primarily for increasing the bottom line and then you follow only brand awareness. -that’s not aligned.


Q: What are some common misconceptions social marketers have when it comes to ROI?

Adam: As a social marketer, it is easy to start to think that social media is a separate entity from the rest of marketing. I encourage people to remember that social marketing is digital marketing and digital marketing is just marketing. A good social strategy involves an integrated strategy with other verticals such as email, online banners, SEO - even non-digital verticals like print.


One of the huge misses by most organizations is that they apply social media marketing as its own demand-gen or lead-gen strategy without considering the implications of how social can positively affect other areas of the business. When I was a social media strategist at a fortune 50 company, I was able to prove at an enterprise level that the addition of social integration to other marketing verticals has increased the overall success of each vertical.


Q: Should social marketers track ROI separately by platform or as a whole?

Grigor: A ROI is a tool to facilitate decision making. If the social marketer wants to facilitate a platform decision, they should track ROI on a platform level. Usually that’s done only once when evaluating the platform. More often social marketers track ROI as a whole (if they do at all). In marketing, organizations talk about ROMI (Return on Marketing Investment) as the investment may vary over the year (OPEX).


Q: How do Lithium Reach and Response help improve a company’s ROI and efficiency?

Adam: Coming from a complex and multifaceted B2B environment, one of the things that appealed to me was this un-siloed approach to social publishing and care. In large organizations, these are most likely separate teams with separate strategy, vision and measurement of success. Lithium Reach and Response, working in tandem, create a strength that comes from collaboration and most importantly from the ability to gain insights into your customers at all stages of their journey.


Grigor: If we we focus on ROI instead of Benefits, then we should be looking only on the bottom line KPIs. So, let’s have a look at the results some of our customers using Lithium Reach and Response are seeing:


  • The 15 early adopters of Lithium Reach saw 25% more engagement in half the time.
  • Post Office UK reduced their go-to-market by 2, thanks to a single and centralized platform (Lithium Reach). There are 2 potential financial benefits, one is a competitive advantage by being able to post faster. The other one is time, as time is money.
  • Using Lithium Response, Symantec decreased average response time from 24 hours to 3 minutes. Similarly, here, two benefits, one for Customer Satisfaction and better Support Experience. Again, the other is time, as time is money. 
  • Sky was able to increase agent efficiency by 83% and improve expert response time by 50% for escalated cases (Lithium Response with Experts trial).


Check out our Customer eBook to learn how brands like StubHub and Alteryx are using Lithium Reach and Response to improve their ROI. 


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