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Three key social media metrics your brand should be monitoring

This post was sponsored by Talkwalker.

Nowadays, it’s practically impossible to map out the customer journey in a straight line. A customer could be interacting with your brand at different times, across various channels.

With 61% of the Southeast Asian population now active on social media – among the world’s highest – there’s no denying that social media has become an important aspect of the customer journey.

The lines continue to blur as more digital channels become available, but it’s part of the marketer’s job to keep up. Not just in terms of timely interactions with your audience, but more so when it comes to measuring the ROI of social media. How do you even begin to measure the impact of your social media marketing efforts?

For businesses who can directly attribute social media metrics to revenue, the answer is simple. For the rest of us, demonstrating social media success remains an age-old challenge. Truth is, the answer will only continue to evolve together with the ever-changing social media landscape.

Should you care about engagement rates? What type of engagement matters? How do you create top-of-mind awareness?

We spoke to some industry experts to shed some light on this topic and get their tips on which metrics marketers should use to measure social media impact.

Vanity versus quality engagement

Any marketing team that’s investing time in social media wants to drive engagement. However, simply looking at the number of “likes” and “views” no longer cuts it.

Some would even classify these as vanity metrics and industry experts have voiced the need to look beyond these metrics  – specifically to look for quality.

Engagement can ultimately be considered in two forms. Passive and active.

Passive engagement involves simple, non-committal gestures from your customers liking your Facebook status or retweeting your posts. These actions take little thought and oftentimes, they could be resonating to that specific post rather than actually connecting with your brand.

Active engagement, on the other hand, entails gestures that take much more thought and commitment where customers could be sharing their own opinions about your brand in the form of comments, reviews or blog posts.

Customers who are actively showing their support for your brand are potentially the best influencers you can find.

Share of voice

When it comes to measuring the effectiveness of your social media marketing efforts, having a benchmark helps. Determine how much of the overall conversation mentions your brand, and what percentage is focused on your competitors.

Given that social media conversations are publicly available, you can easily measure your competitors’ performances – which of their initiatives are driving these conversations. So how can you create more opportunities for your brand to gain share of voice (SOV), thus, creating top-of-mind awareness?

Remember to take a look at the industry at large. Listen to social conversations to spot trends that you could build on for your own social campaigns and find those potential influencers.

Alongside Lion & Lion agency, Rimmel, for instance, successfully leveraged social insights to develop a hyper localised digital strategy. As a result, Rimmel drove brand mentions and ranked 3rd in SOV for the makeup category within its first year in Malaysia.

Sentiment analysis

Engagement and share of voice only really matter if these translate to your customers perceiving your brand positively. Brand mentions in the light of a crisis or scandal are never a part of a marketer’s dream.

By analysing social sentiment, you can have a better real-time understanding as to how your audience feels about your brand – whether they love or hate your campaigns or promotions.

This real-time understanding will also help in preventing any potential issues developing into a crisis, thus, giving you the peace of mind to focus more on driving impact rather than fighting fires.

Sentiment analysis can also be useful in interpreting the conversations about your competitors and the industry as a whole. Arming you with unbiased consumer insights that can better inform your social media strategy as well as your wider brand strategy.

Need more inspiration on how to measure your social media marketing efforts? Download Talkwalker’s expert guide on metrics that matter here.