One of the top questions I get asked when I first meet with a client is ‘what kind of ROI can I expect from my social media marketing efforts’?
Have you ever considered the more important question? What is the cost of absence to my business?
The ROI phrase has always made me cringe. How do you explain to a business owner looking to invest a significant amount of funds into a social media strategy and implementation plan that in fact ROI can be quite difficult to measure.
Of course, we can very easily measure the results from an advert or a post with a clear objective and CTA but, I am talking about the day in- day out posting to a page. This task, if done well, is very time consuming when you take into account content strategy, creation, implementation, community management and of course assessing results and tweaking the strategy according to the data. Whether you outsource your social media or manage it internally it is very time consuming and therefore costly for any business.
So how do you actually measure the results from these efforts?
I suggest that businesses change the way they think of social media marketing. Don’t think of it as a sales tool, think of it as an opportunity to provide great customer service and think of it as an incredible branding mechanism. Then, I promise you the rest will fall in to place.
In saying this, I do believe ROI is important and it does need to be measured however these measures that will ultimately result in more sales can be seen in many different ways.
Every time you comment on a post, people see your profile image so make sure it’s your logo (an example of ROI). Every time you like a post people see your business name pop up, so make sure you engage with others online as much as possible (an example of ROI).
To put this in context. When you are at a networking event and handing over your business card, do you whisper to the card through tight lips “What is my return on investment?”.
When you drive down the highway as you near your billboard on the side of the road do you wind down your window and scream into the wind ‘what is my return on investment?’ No!! So why, should social media be any different?
Get social or you will have to be prepared to play catch up, you can be guaranteed your competitors are online. Procrastinating will only result in you missing the potential to reach billions of people worldwide which includes your target demographic.
As of the third quarter of 2018, Facebook alone had 2.27 billion monthly active users according to statistica.com.
Building a brand takes planning, time, perseverance, consistency and authenticity. And as a very famous brand once said it won’t happen overnight, but it will happen ;-)