To have a successful presence on social media, you would need a good marketing strategy.
And you can’t create a good strategy unless you have good data. Without tracking your follower counts, likes, comments, and conversions, you can’t have good data!
So much to do, yet you’re not sure about how to do it!
Because sometimes, it can be confusing to understand what metrics you should track to measure your social media success.
Well, relax! We understand your hassle. And, that’s why we’ve compiled a list of the 11 most important social media metrics that you can track to stay at the top of every social platform.
But, before breaking down these metrics below, let’s explore why it’s important to track specific social media metrics for every business.
Why It’s Important to Track Certain Metrics of Social Media For Every Business?
Have you ever made a travel plan without knowing where to travel? Sounds irrational, right? reach
You can’t make a plan without knowing what you want or where you’re going. Similarly, you can’t expect results without knowing your goals and how to achieve them on social media.
That’s why social media metrics matter. It can guide your brand on social media, and it helps you meet the goals of your marketing campaign effectively.
Every brand has its own goals on social media. Some may want to generate leads, while some want to increase brand awareness.
Whatever goal your business has, there’s a related metric available. These metrics let you decide if your social marketing strategy is hitting your business goals correctly.
For instance, if your social media goal is to increase brand awareness, you can track engagement metrics and brand mentions to ensure that you’re going on the right path.
Also, if you’re a social media manager or marketer working for various clients, social media metrics will help you run campaigns more efficiently.
11 Important Social Media Metrics That You Should Start Tracking Today
Before de-coding the top 11 social media metrics, define your goals first.
Your goal might be generating leads, revenues, followers, or making sales. What it might be, but make sure that you have a clear goal in mind.
And now, here are the 11 most important social media metrics:
How many times have you heard that your social media engagement rate doesn’t matter? They are just “vanity metrics”, and they can’t contribute to your company’s sales pipeline!
Well, next time, if someone says engagement metrics are a waste of time, don’t listen! They are saying these because they don’t understand how these metrics can effectively generate leads and drive revenue for your business indirectly.
Engagement rate is a vital social media metric for companies to track. It’s a metric that can show how your audience interacts with your content. Engagement metrics come in the form of shares, comments, and likes.
In 2020, Fox News was the leading engaged brand on Facebook with nearly 491.4 million comments, post-level reactions, and shares, according to Statista.
With engagement metrics, you can understand how actively your audience interacts with your social channels. You can also measure if your brand campaigns are running effectively or not.
In most social networking sites, the audience can both reply and share your content. Engagement metrics like Facebook share and Twitter retweets will help you understand who’s sharing your content. On the contrary, likes and comments will help you know who is interacting with your content regularly.
You can track your social media engagement metrics through:
Average Engagement Rate
The average engagement rate is the number of likes, shares, and comments your post receives on a social media platform Compared to your total followers.
A high average engagement rate is always a good sign. It means your audience can resonate with your posts. Also, if you have a higher engagement rate, the number of likes, shares, and comments doesn’t matter that much.
Here’s a formula that you can use to track the average engagement rate on your post easily:
Total likes, comments, & shares / Total followers X 100 = Average Engagement Rate
There you go! You can apply this formula to measure your average engagement rate.
Here’s a heads up: The average engagement rate is different in each social media channel. For instance, in 2020, the average engagement rate for brands on Instagram was 6.39%. In contrast, Facebook’s engagement rate was only 0.27%.
When your followers like or favor one of your posts on a social media channel, they know that they’re applauding your content. And they can find value from your post.
Here’s how you can track applause rate:
Total approval actions / Total followers X 100 = Applause rate percentage
The number of shares your post receives relative to your total followers is known as the amplification rate. The higher the amplification rate, the better your audience can relate to your brand.
Here’s how you can track amplification rate:
Total post shares / Total followers X 100 = Amplification rate percentage
2. Follower Growth
The easiest and fastest way to measure the success of your brand on social media is – followers growth.
How quickly are you gaining new followers? Did you gain more followers than last month? You can get answers to all these questions by simply tracking followers’ growth metrics.
Here’s how you can track it:
- Start by selecting a period of weeks or months that you want to track
- Count the number of followers you gained in that specific period of time.
- Then divide your net new followers by the number of total followers.
Net new followers / Total followers X 100 = Followers growth rate
Let’s clarify this with a bit of example.
Suppose you want to track your followers’ growth rate between September and December. On September 1st, you had 10,000 followers, and at the end of December, you had 16,000 followers. That means from September to December, you gained 6,000 followers. So, your followers’ growth rate would be 37%.
The easiest social media metric you should start tracking today is post-reach. Your post reach will help you understand how far are your posts are reaching
And most importantly, how big your audience base is.
Post reach is one of the most actionable metrics. The best part is your posting time (when your followers are active), and content (value-added content) can directly impact your post reach.
Here’s how you can track your posts reach:
- Track the reach of one of your posts.
- Then divide your post reach by total followers.
- Multiply by 100. And, you’ll get your post-reach percentage.
Total post reach / Total followers X 100 = Post reach percentage
And some social media platforms like Instagram also show you the overall reach of your social media posts.
For instance, from the number of likes, retweets, and comments on this Spotify Twitter post, we can assume this had a successful reach.
If you ever wondered,
- How many people are talking about your brand?
- How many people are aware of your brand?
- What’s the position of your brand in the market?
Then, SOV or Share of Voice is the metric you’re looking for.
Technically speaking, the share of voice lets you analyze how popular your brand is compared to your rivals. For example, during the pandemic, Zoom had a better SOV than any other video conferencing app.
This metric can help you understand your brand position and competitor insights. You can renovate your marketing strategies based on the Percentage of SOV.
The general formula to track your social share of voice is:
Brand mentions / Total mentions (your brand mentions competitor mentions) X 100 = Social share of voice
Tracking your brand’s social share of voice isn’t difficult as it sounds. There are tons of social media analytics tools available to make your process easy as pie.
5. Conversion Rate
The ultimate goal of having a solid social media presence is conversion. No matter what your marketing strategy is, your primary goal should be converting your leads into customers.
And this is where measuring conversion rate is crucial. Measuring the conversion rate, you’ll understand who followed you on Instagram, subscribed to your YouTube channel, clicked a link on your bio, or downloaded your content.
Basically, conversion rate helps you understand who is taking action on your social media channels. A high conversion rate indicates your followers love your posts; they want to connect with your brand.
Here’s how you can easily track conversion :
- Post something with a CTA link. For example, if you want your audience to visit your company page, create a post with your company’s website link.
- Make the link trackable using a URL shortener.
- Now take the number of. conversion or the number of visitors to your site.
- Divide it by the total clicks.
- Multiply by 100. You’ll get your conversion rate percentage.
Conversion / Total clicks X 100 = Conversion rate percentage
6. CTR (Click-through rate)
Now you might confuse the Click-through rate with likes and shares. But, the fact is both are different metrics. CTR or Click-through rate indicates how often your followers click on a link or CTA in your post.
Some common areas where you can track CTR are PPC advertisements, email links, links on websites, on-site buttons, images, etc. Measuring your posts’ click-through rate will give you an idea of how effectively your post turns followers into customers.
Here’s how you can measure the click-through rate on a post:
- Measure the total impression and clicks on your post’s link.
- Divide total clicks by the number of total impressions.
- Multiply by 100.
Total clicks / Total impressions X 100 = CTR rate
7. CPC (Cost per click)
Measuring your CPC metrics or cost per click is crucial if you have a specific budget for social media marketing. CPC is the amount you spend per click on your sponsored post on a social media platform.
When you decide to advertise on a platform like Instagram, Linkedin, Facebook, or Twitter, focus on your CPC metric to understand whether your investment is effective or not.
To track your social media ad cost per click:
- Divide your total ad spend by total measured clicks.
- Multiply by 1000 to get your cost per click.
Or, if you’re already running ads, you can easily see the CPC of your ads from the advertisement dashboard of that particular social media itself.
A quick reminder: An ideal cost per click metric will depend on your business, and it fluctuates a lot. So, it’s best to compare different ad campaigns to see which campaign has a higher CPC.
8. CPM (Cost Per Thousand Impressions)
Each time the amount you pay after 1000 people scroll past your advertised social media post is known as cost per thousand impressions.
Not to be confused with the CPC campaign, a CPM post only creates an impression on people. CPM does not directly impact the success of your ads, but it’s an easy and fastest way to drive views and split test content.
You can measure your CPM metric by multiplying your total ad spending by 1000 and then dividing it by total ad impressions.
9. Cost Per Conversion
In social media advertisements, the amount you pay for achieving a conversion goal is known as CPC or cost per conversion. This metric is one of the best ways to understand how well your content is performing. How well it can persuade your audience to take action.
If you get a lower cost per conversion, it could indicate your ads are reaching the right target audience. On the other hand, if the cost per conversion is higher, it’s time to change or tweak your ad as it’s not converting well.
However, a good cost per conversion rate mainly depends on your business, services, products, and ad type.
You can easily track your cost per conversion from the advertising dashboard itself.
10. Brand Mentions
Brand mentions on different social media channels are a great way to track your brand awareness.
But what are “brand mentions”?
Well, when one of your followers or any user on social media talks about your brand, product, or services, they mention your brand. Sometimes they might tag your page or use branded hashtags to mention your brand all across the social network.
Here’s an example of a brand mention by a user on Twitter, where she mentioned the #Google hashtag.
Brand mention is a popular metric that allows you to understand:
- Whether your followers like your brand, product, or services.
- Whether your followers are engaged with your content.
- The best time to share on social platforms
Brand mentions are crucial for your business as they can make or break your brand image. And not just your brand mentions; you can even analyze your competitors’ position by tracking their mentions as well.
11. Top Referring Social Media Channels
Finally, if your brand’s social media goal is to generate website traffic, you must track top referring social media channels.
Using the Google analytics tool, you can track your most valuable networks. You can see whether Twitter or Facebook sends you the most traffic to your website. Other than that, Google Analytics also shows you the bounce rate, conversion rate, and much more useful metrics of your website.
We can take Buffer’s blog example here. The Google Analytics report of Buffer’s website tells that Twitter sent 79,096 traffics. While Linkedin sends only 11,449 visitors.
From these stats, Buffer analyzed whether they should put more effort on Linkedin and Facebook? Or perhaps, they should brainstorm ways to drive more traffic from Twitter to their blog.
As we said earlier, it all comes down to your business goals. Out of our 11 metrics, your company might need only one or two of them. And that’s normal. After all, one size doesn’t fit all.
Lastly, if you want to understand what your audience is talking about and how they’re engaging with your brand, you should be tracking your social media metrics.
And remember, consistency matters the most on social media. Pick one or a few metrics and measure them consistently if you want to make the most out of social media.
You can even use the formulas that we’ve shared for tracking the social media metrics on a weekly or monthly basis.
And then, depending upon your results, you can analyze it to understand where your social media needs improvement and what you have to fix.
Last but not least, have you ever tracked your social media metrics? If yes, what are the most important metrics that you mainly focus on? Let us know in the comments below.