Influence, Engagement, Likes? How about Sales?

September 25, 2012By

For the next few years more small businesses are going to invest in social media.

It’s been about 3 or 4 years since companies of all sizes have really started to invest in social media. During that time there have been lots of measurement metrics being used.

As more companies invest in social media – both with time and money – I want to make sure the right measurements are being used.

Likes and Followers

The first thing people notice when they get into social media is the number of likes and followers. This is a surface measurement of how successful a company is on Facebook. There are even companies that track the number of likes other companies have on Facebook and promote it as if the top companies on the Facebook like list are the top companies out there. Sure, it might be true, but is that company successful because of its likes on Facebook?

I do think there is value in likes and followers on social media websites. I think that if a customer is weighing the options they will look for social proof. Having a large number of likes can be a form of social proof.

Likes can also act kind of like subscribers in a way, but you have little control over how you can market to people that like your brand. You’re much better off working harder to acquire email addresses.

Influence

After likes and followers you’ll read about influence. There are suggestions that your company needs to reach its influencers. You need to find the people out there that love your brand and really get them to work their magic by sharing the news about your brand.

Influence is also used to measure how well a company uses social media. If you have great influence you have great reach with social media. You share information and it really influences the customers in your industry. This can work, but really you want to track how this can lead back to sales.

Engagement

This is the last buzz word we’ll discuss today.

Engagement is something you’ll read about with social media. You’ll read that you need to engage your target customers. The thing with engagement, and all of these words, is that they’re good. You really do want to do these things, but it’s hard to measure things like engagement. It’s hard to focus on engagement and track its success.

You could really engage people on Facebook, but really you want to drive sales, not engagement. If you can see that the engagement on Facebook is leading to sales then it’s totally worth it. My experience shows this is rarely the case.

Focus on Sales and Profit

As you know the focus needs to be on sales and profit.

I don’t think social media is totally lost on this idea. So many companies are investing in social media. These companies aren’t stupid. There has to be something coming to them in the form of sales.

It’s important to focus on how your marketing efforts are driving sales.

Tomorrow I’m going to discuss how the sales have been for Ghost Blog Writers over the last two months. I’ll share how all sales have come as a result of people discovering the company through the company blog.

At Ghost Blog Writers we focus on blogging as the center of our social efforts. We want people to visit our blog instead of our social media sites. It’s more work, but it leads to sales for us and it can for you as well.