As consultants adopt digital marketing, tracking this activity becomes more important and more challenging. LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube each have their own set of metrics. Websites, newsletters and podcasts do as well.
In an effort to make it simple, I’m going to present you a cheat sheet of marketing metrics. For each element of your approach, I would suggest one or two key metrics that we find most important.
I should also mention that these metrics do not have to be drawn manually. By leveraging marketing dashboards to automate data collection, you can focus solely on analytics. Programs like Salesforce’s Dataorama or Google’s Data Studio work well for this, among many others. Here are our recommendations on how to best measure your digital marketing.
Measuring your Facebook and LinkedIn posts
When you post on Facebook or LinkedIn, you’ll want to know how many people are viewing it and how many are engaging. This helps you determine which topics and formats are most effective. For example, if you learn that your market commentary posts are a bust, but your personal photos get quality engagement, it helps you plan your content mix for the next month. Here are the key metrics to follow:
- Reach – This measures the number of people who have seen your ad at least once. Low reach is not just a sign of a small follower base, bad content can limit your reach as well.
- Reactions – On Facebook these include Like, Love, Care, Haha, Wow, Sad and Angry. In LinkedIn, it’s just like. On any network, this is the most visible sign of whether your audience is engaging with your content.
- Comments – When someone writes a comment on your post, they are treated differently when it comes to algorithms. It weighs more and tells the algorithm that your content is more widely spreadable.
Measuring Facebook and LinkedIn as a whole
Success is not measured by a single point; The totality of your efforts needs to be measured. It means followers, overall reach, overall engagement, etc. Over time, you are building an audience that not only engages with your posts, but also comes to you when there is a financial need. Here are the key metrics:
- Total Followers – This is your audience, whether it’s followers of your LinkedIn company page or your Facebook page. This is a good indicator of your overall success in that network.
- Monthly Follower Growth – It shows the growth of your followers every month. This number can go up or down depending on your content and your efforts to build followers.
- Monthly Reach, Reactions and Comments – This shows the cumulative number among all posts in a given month.
Measuring your digital advertising
Digital ads are measured objectively. After all, you should grade yourself differently if you want to build brand awareness versus gain leads. Thankfully, it works equally well between LinkedIn and Facebook.
- Awareness – Cost Per Mill (CPM) – This is the cheapest objective, in which you just want to make people aware of you and your ideas. CPM tells you the cost of reaching 1,000 people.
- Engagement – Cost Per Result – Engagement comes in different forms. This can be a link click, a video view or many other actions. In these cases, you will measure the cost per desired result.
- Conversions – Cost Per Lead – Even leads come in many forms. It can be leads captured in Facebook or LinkedIn or even conversions on your website. Either way, it is best measured as cost per lead.
There is one important caveat to all this. Some people need certainty of results before starting out with new content or advertising initiatives. This usually prevents them with the trial and error required to see digital marketing success. We’d love to do the activity first, then figure out the second tracking. Just like that it is best to exercise first, before measuring the effect it will have on your body. Getting started is the only way to really know what will work!
Stephen Boswell is a partner with The Ochsley Institute, a firm that specializes in research and training for the financial services industry. @StephenBoswell www.oechsli.com