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The Social Media Metrics that Matter

If you’re still not taking social media seriously, consider this: There are now more than 1.44 billion monthly active users of Facebook, with 96% of adults in the U.K. having an account on the world’s most popular social media platform. Twitter has 750 million active users as of last year – and counting. Every 1 out of 3 professionals all over the world has a LinkedIn profile, and the biggest population is from the U.K. with over 15 million LinkedIn users.

But social media offers more than just staggering popularity and reach. A HubSpot study reveals that 80% of marketers confirm that their social media efforts have increased traffic to their site. Media Bistro reports 67%of Twitter users will most likely buy from businesses they follow on Twitter. Those are just two of the many authority studies showing how social media marketing can offer measurable business advantages.

Despite the impressive numbers and studies, why are many businesses still timid about fully taking advantage of the Social Web?

The main reason is that social metrics can still be an unfamiliar and intimidating issue for the uninitiated. Business owners and marketers facing increasing marketing costs are hesitant to spend time and money on something they don’t know how to track. So what are the social media metrics that you should always measure, monitor and analyse?

Measure the engagement level. In this metric, you’re measuring not just every response, but quality responses that can be counted as conversational. This means your post was moving enough that your audience did not simply click the “like” button, but also made the effort to construct and leave a comment. In this case, measure the comments on your Facebook or Twitter post, Google+ update or LinkedIn article.

Measure the reach. Gauge the strength of your social media effort by how many it reached among your connections – as well as your connections’ connections. This means your post has touched your audience so much that they wanted to share and reshare it to other people, thus amplifying your exposure. In this case, what you need to measure is how many shares, retweets and repins (or whatever is appropriate) your posts were able to trigger.

Measure the money. When you spend marketing pounds on Social Media, you’ve got to enjoy your ROI in pounds as well. While the authority and visibility you can obtain from social media is priceless and can lead to profit, it also pays to measure the direct economic value of your social media efforts. For this metric, you can measure the cost savings you enjoy compared to using traditional advertising. You should also measure the revenue you gain from opt-ins, paid subscriptions and actual sales you made via your social media campaigns. 

If you're not measuring the metrics that really matter, you are not getting true value from your Social Media activity. It may be time to change the way your business views Social Media. 

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