How does your social media campaign measure up? Understanding social media ROI.

by John Cloonan | Aug 2, 2021 | Blog, ROI

You have created a social media campaign that is sure to bring a lot of new “followers, likes and friends.”  You have taken your product or special event and have included it on every social media platform such as Facebook, Tik Tok, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Neighborhood. 

And now you are looking at the number of people who are viewing your campaign. And you look, and you look, and you look again. And at the end of the week, ask yourself, “What am I looking for?   

How can I share with my client or VP that not only is the campaign working, but why it is working? How will social media efforts increase sales, visibility and market share? Has it gone viral? Is customer service listening and engaging with our clients?  

How do I measure results that align with the goals of the campaign and with the broader business goals such as sales, customer service, product approval? Was the event a big hit only on social media? How will the event’s online success affect our bottom line? How do you measure these results? You measure using both Soft and Hard ROI Goals and Targets. 

Using Soft ROI and Hard ROI to Measure Goals and Targets  

Hard ROI is measuring the loss or increase in bottom line financials. While in comparison to Soft ROI which are non-quantifiable measurements that do not immediately affect the bottom-line financials. Both Soft and Hard ROI are measured using goals (objectives) and targets and key performance indicators.    

Goals (Objectives) – What are you measuring? How will you measure?  And when do you measure? Ex: Brand Conversions, Brand Awareness, Customer Service Experiences, Brand Value.  

Target (Value) – What specific value will you assign to a Goal (Objective) and when? Every month, two months, quarterly?  

Key Performance Indicators– Your critical and measurable data.  Often overlooked, KPIs allow you to manage, measure and track desired business goals (objectives).  

Which Hard and Soft ROI Goals are Measurable and Non-Measurable?  

Examples of measurable Hard ROI goals:  

  • Offline (in store) and online sales   
  • Market share  
  • Leads generated  
  • Lead conversion (closed sales, signed contracts)  
  • Monitoring redeemed coupons or rewards (trackable after purchase)  
  • Site traffic  
  • Sign-ups and conversions   

Examples of measurable Soft ROI goals:  

  • New Likes, Comments, Share (social media platforms, blog comments, vlog comment)  
  • Audience/attendance (attendees at a special event, campaign)  
  • Engagement (online communications with followers, fans, etc.)  
  • Reach – Where is the brand visible? (Which social media platforms)  
  • Brand Awareness (how many people and media outlets are talking about your brand online/offline)  

Example Walk/Run Social Media Campaign (Soft ROI/Hard ROI)  

  • You have created an online event for a new walk/run for your organization. The walk/run has measurable goals with targets. You have looked at your Key Performance Indicators (how many sign-ups, how much online and offline in merchandise sales, how many future sign-ups, how many walk-up (attendees that did not sign up online but heard about the event via word of mouth). You have created the right online ads targeting your market. You have created profile/pages for the walk/run on platforms that will attract your audience. With each social media effort for the event, you have included discounts, redeemable coupons and point people to retrieve these items via your sign-up form on your website, which also includes a sign up for the walk/run.   
  • Revenues generated from a Soft ROI campaign for a Walk/Run campaign.  
  • Brand Awareness generated from a Soft ROI campaign that generated sign-up and conversions – people visiting website sign up form. (Increased website traffic.)  
  • Online sales increased from social media platform presence based on online ad offering discount code on both early sign-up for the walk/run and products/services.  

Knowing how your social media efforts will measure up is important to every company or organization’s bottom line.  All departments and activities, from events, sales, marketing, public relationships and customer services can be measured directly (Hard ROI) or indirectly (soft ROI) using well calculated ROI. Understanding ROI will help you to effectively measure and manage your company’s bottom line, brand’s visibility, brand value, monitor customer loyalty and generate and convert lead.  

Developing a strategy with clear goals (objectives), target and key performance indicators will help you to effectively measure your next sales, marketing public relations and social media campaigns and events.  

Marketing Guy & Strategic Polymath | Website | + posts

John’s the founder of Audacity Marketing. When he’s not racing motorcycles, he’s building marketing strategies for Audacity clients and anyone else who’ll listen.

John’s worn all the marketing hats, from consultant to agency owner to executive to university professor. He’s held leadership roles in industries from staffing to behavioral health to capital-C consulting. He’s branded or rebranded over 100 companies.

John buttresses 25+ years in marketing with an MBA from Georgia State University.

John lives with his girlfriend Suzanne, his dog Seamus, and his daughter Annie when she shows up from college.