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Social Media Engagement Stats Don't Matter
The metric to monitor is action, not engagement
This is the post that social media managers don’t want you to read.
Here is the cold hard truth. Businesses that don't have customers like to brag about social media stats. People who don't get elected or appointed to office, don't change public policy, or earn media coverage like bragging about social media stats.
Social media isn't a key performance indicator.
The metric to monitor is action, not engagement. Did people buy, join, donate, register, etc.?
A marketing company once bragged to me about a video they produced for a small business in Los Angeles reaching a million Instagram views. They refused to answer my follow-up question. "How many sales did it get?" Instead, they tried to sell me on how many video views they could get my local Omaha client. The video showed a woman’s backside, and best I could tell, got views from around the country but didn’t produce a single dollar in revenue.
That small business needed money, not video views from around the country, but they were sold on getting social media engagement.
You can get a lot of social media engagement by being offensive, showing pornography, using clickbait tactics, or misleading visitors, but chances are that your business or non-profit shouldn’t be involved in these tactics.
I’m not saying social media doesn’t matter.
Social media can work, but goals must first be clearly defined. When people jump right into social media tactics without first setting goals, they risk wasting time, burning through money, and sometimes even offending their target audience.
How to make it work:
Social media may or may not work for your business, non-profit, or political campaign/party. Without knowing your business and industry, I am not comfortable saying you should or should not use it. That said, below are some general tips to make it more likely to succeed.
Define your goals. Let your vision define strategy, and your strategy define your tactics.
Measure actions (conversion tracking). How many people did the campaigns cause to act (examples: donate, buy, subscribe)?
Track the campaign results and make revisions if they aren’t meeting your goals.
Use A/B testing when possible to improve performance.
Don’t upset your target market with tone-deaf messaging.
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