Do you have a marketing plan for your social media content? Have you set goals and objectives? What do you see as the main markers of success?
- More followers?
- Brand awareness?
- Customer loyalty?
Of course most people will have their own classification of success – but knowing how other brands define their goals and objectives can give you some pretty valuable context!
Social Fresh recently published a study answering that very question, asking hundreds of digital marketers about how they define success, and how much time they actually spend on social media.
Here’s a synopsis of their main findings:
What do more than three out of four digital marketers want out of social media?
76% of respondents cited it as one of their top goals, it was the only goal that more than half the respondents could agree on! (Lead generation finished in second place with only 47% of marketers choosing it.)
The fact that awareness is such a priority for brands on social media speaks to the problem of what marketers call noise – in this case, low-value chatter that exists without any real goal other than being heard. Effectively building and maintaining brand awareness on social media requires a certain amount of respect for your audience, because otherwise, you’re just creating noise!
The other big problem with trying to generate awareness is that it’s hard to determine its success.
Of course you can measure how much awareness a status update generated by answering the question of how many people saw that update. But how does that translate to overall awareness – the space you occupy in those people’s memories, the feelings they associate with your brand, and the likelihood that they’ll become a customer, stay a customer, or refer you to a friend?
“Social media marketing takes more than just a few plain status updates – and that’s where a lot of brands get stuck.”
Of the marketers surveyed in this study, only 58% write a blog post even once a month. Other types of content – like webinars, infographics, podcasts, and videos – are even less popular!
79% of marketers are creating images to go with their posts at least once a month, so at least that valued strategy isn’t being ignored.
“Image-based posts remain the most popular option for content, and for good reason. They are familiar, easily digestible, and the formats with which content creators are most comfortable.”
Surely conversion goals should be a much larger priority and focus for marketers?
47% listed lead generation as a top social media goal and 28% listed sales. These are the numbers that provide the most clarity to how social media is supporting the growth of a business, and yet they are not supported by even a majority of respondents.
So, what do we take away from this?
When asked what networks had the highest ROI Facebook was a clear winner, with Twitter and Snapchat coming next. This is perhaps because Facebook makes it so easy to boost posts for a relatively low cost, and it could also be through totally organic posts and sales!
Moving forward I feel that there should be a much bigger leap towards embracing new formats of content and a much more focused effort of measuring your goals and objectives. As marketers, we must provide our audiences with top quality content that is measurable from the business end, and that shows results!