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What social media KPIs should I be tracking?

Social media KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) are the metrics used to determine if a business’s social media marketing strategy is effective. Basically, they’re tracked data related to a company’s presence on individual platforms like Facebook, Twitter, TikTok or Instagram, or across all social platforms collectively.

If you’ve read about KPIs, I’m sure you’ve seen the SMART analogy; Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. I won’t go into that in this article as there are so many breakdowns of this analogy available online. What I will go over, however, is which KPIs you should be tracking and how to set and monitor them. 

Firstly, make it clear how tracking the KPI will help the company reach a specific business goal. Think beyond numbers and data. How do the metrics you’re tracking support the business and play into the larger, carefully designed strategy?

It is also crucial to communicate KPIs with your team, your boss and any other stakeholders who should stay up to date with your strategy. This will help you set expectations and make sure everyone is aligned on what you’re measuring and why. Furthemore, if measuring social media KPIs is new to your team, make sure you collect benchmark data. That way, you can compare changes over time and know growth when you see it — and prove to your boss that your strategy is working. Analytics are everything!

You also need to define your cadence. Are you tracking your KPIs weekly? Monthly? Bimonthly? Decide on a pattern that will help you clearly see growth patterns and developments, and react quickly when things aren’t working great. The same goes for when you’ll review the effectiveness of said KPIs. 

Now, onto which KPIs are worth tracking. 

Reach KPIs

Reach KPIs measure how many users come across your social channels. These users might only interact with the channel passively — reach and engagement are two different things. Think of reach as a quantity measurement — reach data demonstrates your existing and potential audience, growth over time and brand awareness.

Impressions

This is the number of times your post was visible in someone’s feed or timeline. This doesn’t necessarily mean the person who viewed the post noticed it or read it.

Follower count

The number of followers your social channel has at a set time.

Audience growth rate

You want to make sure you’re gaining followers, not losing them. Audience growth rate demonstrates how follower count is changing over time.

Reach

This is how many people have seen a post since it went live. Reach changes depending on when your audience is online and how good your content is. It gives you an idea of what your audience finds valuable and interesting.

Potential reach

This measures the number of people who could see a post during a reporting period. Put another way, if one of your followers shared your post with their network, between 2% and 5% of their followers would factor into the post’s potential reach.

Social share of voice

This metric tracks how many people mentioned your brand, compared to the number of people mentioning your competitors. Simply, it shows how relevant your brand is within your industry. You can use a social listening tool like Hootsuite to measure your own and your competitors’ mentions during a specific timeframe.

Social media engagement KPIs

KPIs for social media engagement measure the quality of the interactions with your social followers. They show you whether your audience is connecting with what you have to say and willing to interact with your brand. Things to measure here are you classic likes, follows, saves, comments and average engagement rate (as well as streams for content like songs and podcasts). 

Conversion KPIs

Conversion KPIs measure how many social interactions turn into website visits, newsletter sign-ups, purchases or other desired actions. Conversion metrics reflect how effective your social media strategy is and whether it’s leading to actionable outcomes. Here you can calculate the following. 

Conversation rates

This is the number of users who perform the actions outlined in your social media CTA (visit your website or landing page, subscribe to a mailing list, make a purchase, etc.) compared to the total number of clicks on that given post. A high conversion rate shows that your social media post delivered something valuable to your audience that made them act! 

CTR

Click Through Rate is the percentage of people who viewed your post and clicked on the CTA (call to action) it included. This provides insight into whether your content captures your audience’s attention and inspires them to act.

Bounce rate

Not everyone who clicks on your social media links will follow through, reading the full article you shared or completing a purchase. Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who clicked on a link in your social post, but then quickly left that page without taking any action. You want this to be low — it signals your content isn’t all that engaging, or the user experience you provided was less than perfect.

Cost per click (CPC)

CPC is the amount you pay social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter or Instagram per individual click on your sponsored social media post. Track this to see if the amount you’re spending is a worthwhile investment.

Customer satisfaction KPIs

Customer satisfaction KPIs are tracked to see how social media users think and feel about your brand. The sentiment of their interactions with your brand online is direct feedback for your business.

Customer testimonials

Reviews typed up by your customers and posted to social channels like Google My Business or Facebook reviews clearly demonstrate how customers feel about an experience or product. Star rating also provides a good snapshot of how customers feel about your business.

Customer satisfaction score (CSat)

This metric shows how happy your followers are with your brand’s products or services.

You could collect this data through a Twitter poll or Facebook survey, for example, asking one simple question: How would you describe your overall satisfaction with this product? Depending on how you set up your poll, respondents would rate their satisfaction either numerically (e.g. on a scale from 1 to 10) or through descriptors like poor, average or excellent.

Net promoter score (NPS)

This metric measures your followers’ brand loyalty. Using a poll or survey on your brand’s social channels, ask one question: How likely would you be to recommend this product to a friend? Give respondents the chance to answer using a numerical scale or through descriptors like unlikely, likely or very likely.

In regards to where you can track these metrics, platforms like Hootesuite or even the social platforms themselves (such as Spotify for Artists) offer extremely beneficial insights onto all these types of KPIs. Here’s to flourishing your business!

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