Are Social Marketers Focused on the Wrong Metrics?

Many marketers seem stuck in the past, worrying about abstract engagement or even the relatively outdated pageviews metric.

Social media marketers need to make a more sincere effort toward return on investment, predictability and profitability. Many marketers seem stuck in the past, worrying about abstract engagement, or even the relatively outdated pageviews metric. Simply Measured co-founder and CPO Adam Schoenfeld identified three barriers to success in measuring social ROI opportunities, and what marketers need to overcome them.

According to Simply Measured, the first problem is settling for the easy approach. Measuring true ROI is difficult, as marketers may not have access to all the tools they need to measure certain metrics, or they may not be able to identify the best metrics to examine. Simply Measured found that 51 percent of small businesses are still primarily focused on pageviews, and eight percent don’t measure the success of their social campaigns at all.

The best social media marketers focus on an approach that brings real results:

They have gotten laser-focused on establishing their business goals, measuring toward those goals, and optimizing social strategy, content, and tactics for their desired business results.

The second issue is fear of low numbers. Dark social sharing, along with untracked or under-tracked metrics like revenue-per-social-post or direct conversion numbers can make traditional metrics look terrible. Post-purchase tracking can bring you back to a core audience that your social media posts may be completely missing. Let bad numbers inform smart decision-making and strategy pivots.

Finally, Schoenfeld posits that the technology employed by most marketers is too fragmented and doesn’t provide actionable insights.

He notes:

You can piece together web analytics, financial data, social listening, social network APIs, and other directional data, but it’s a technological challenge to properly attribute all types of social activity to the buyer’s journey and revenue.

Using an integrated solution may be a start, but the tools are only as good as the hands that work them. Without a clear strategy and a focus on real ROI, campaigns will continue to mismanage assets and miss out on long term gains. Everyone knows their engagement statistics by now, so it’s time to turn our attention to provable business outcomes.