Interview: Carnegie Mellon Professor Ari Lightman On How Students Are Empowered By Learning To Use Brandwatch Consumer Research
By Kara FinnertyJun 10
Published April 21st 2017
Over the last few years, social media has taken a tremendously important role in how we consume information. However, for businesses, achieving success in this field has turned out to be a tricky task, to say the least.
In fact, a CMO survey found that 41.5 percent of marketers haven’t been able to show the full effectiveness of social media on their business model.
The obvious metrics to keep up on are likes, shares, comments, and growth in followership. However, the harsh reality is that these numbers do not necessarily offer enough detail necessary to fully understand how to grow your brand.
In order to properly examine the results of your social media strategy, you need to have a firm grasp on where exactly your efforts fit into the buyer’s journey.
Let’s talk about how you can apply this concept and unlock social media’s true potential.
The concept of ‘social media attribution’ refers to the process of giving credit to certain outlets, campaigns, or specific posts based on results.
The nature of social media for business is about giving your brand messaging a relevant and humanized voice. Therefore, it requires a good deal of awareness and engagement to prompt a conversion.
For instance, let’s say a person became aware of your product or service from a video on Twitter. As a result, they start following your profile.
Next, they see a post and click through to your website. Upon visiting your platform, they subscribe to your email list to stay updated on special offers and newsletters.
Then, they receive an email with a link to a brand new product, follow it, and purchase from your website. In this case, a Twitter video would be the social media attribution to this sale.
To gain these valuable insights, you need to implement a multi-touch attribution model to give credit where it’s due and shed light on your most effective social vehicles. Google Analytics offer a number of these models.Nailing down a strong idea of how each social channel aligns to your business goals is crucial in shaping a strategy around the buyer’s journey.
As important as it is to develop a solid attribution model, understanding your cost per acquisition (CPA) is a big part of the puzzle.
Let’s say you are starting a Facebook campaign with the goal of increasing leads via email signups. For this task, you will need to determine roughly how many of these leads turn into customers. Next, you need to figure out how much it costs to produce each post (time and resources required). Then, divide by the amount of customers gained from the signup.
So, you would take 20 percent of 10 to get 2 acquisitions from the post. Then you take the cost to produce ($40), and divide by the 2 new customers – making your CPA $20.
Pinpointing this metric is essential to learning exactly what your ROI is for any social media campaign.
Putting together a post that gains serious consumer traction is much harder than it looks. In addition to social media monitoring, creating an action-driven post with clear-cut objectives requires a good deal of collaboration across all departments involved. Keep in mind, certain posts are most likely geared toward different parts of the buyer’s journey and need different degrees of input.
For example, let’s say you are putting together a post with the goal of increasing sales for a new item. Finding the right words and numbers might involve exchanging data and metrics from the likes of the sales team, customer service, creative department, and of course, the marketing team.
Brands are wise to use project management tools to delegate tasks and create smoother workflows to get jobs like this done efficiently.
While there are tools such as Hootsuite and Oktopost for social media scheduling and management, WorkZone is a great platform for marketing and support teams to collaborate. This promotes open communication across departments to find the most optimal ways to complete tasks – shared workspaces, to-do lists, and workflow management make sure no channel or campaign is left behind.
Finding a good rhythm early on is crucial for consistently navigating consumers through the buyer’s journey.
As most experts know, social media marketing is essentially a guessing game if you fail to calculate ROI. However, pinpointing this exact metric can be surprisingly difficult. A survey by TrustRadius found that 60 percent of marketers identified the job of measuring ROI as the most challenging task in social media marketing.
While the equation itself is a relatively simple concept, putting it into direct context is the part where most people get puzzled. The key is having an in-depth understanding of how each objective fits into the buyer’s journey.
It’s important to realize that the ROI won’t always be 100 percent accurate. But, once you have a dependable attribution model which measures how business goals match up to your marketing funnel, you will be on the right track to making more informed decisions with your budget
Social media marketing is an ever-evolving entity. It’s not uncommon to throw out the playbook and start from scratch if the needs of the buyer’s journey are not being met. As you can see, there is a lot more that goes into a successful post than most people think.
The best thing you can do is keep a close eye on how people are interacting with your brand and align your social media approach accordingly.
Pratik Dholakiya is a Digital Marketing Consultant specializing in building a strong brand presence and achieving sustainable business growth.