Calculating Social Media Marketing ROI: The Goals
Some weeks back I wrote about the process of calculating the ROI of Social Media Marketing. I noted that an important part of this process is setting goals.
Truth be told, setting goals may be the hardest part of measuring ROI.However, it is most likely the important.
In this post, I’l walk you through the process of setting goals.
One of my favorite books while growing up was Alice in the wonderland. A lot of the things that happen in the book are weird yet relatable.
In a particular scene in the book, Alice gets to place in the wood and is confused on which way to turn. She sees the Cheshire cat on a tree. This conversation ensues;
“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t much care where–” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t matter s which way you go,” said the Cat.
This very short excerpt tells us the need for goals. You have to have them before setting out. If you don’t ,you can’t determine your destination neither will you be able to make the right decisions on what route to take in a journey.
How do you get “there” when you don’t know or don’t care where “there” is?
In the journey of social media ROI, goals are all important.
Effective goals are smart goals. The concept of effective is nicely wrapped in the succinct acronym-SMART.
Let’s take a look at what each letter of the acronym means.
Being specific implies that there is no vagueness in the goals set. Goals like ‘I want to increase our online presence’ is not specific. Setting a goal like ‘Increase our Facebook likes by 2000 each month’ is more specific. This process of specificity can be clearer defined by seeking to answer the 6 Ws. for example:
Who is involved with the goal?
What do you want to accomplish with your actions?
Where is the location of your activity?.
When will the goal will be started and accomplished by?
Which requirements need to considered or which obstacles do you need to overcome?
Why do you want to accomplish the goal? If you are able to answer all these questions you have really hit the nail on the head. (Yes, yes it’s not a press release and you don’t have to answer all the questions, it’s just a hack to make it easier).
In all focus is a powerful force that draws your goals to you.
When your goals are specific, they usually become measurable. If they are not , please ensure they do become measurable.
A goal without a measurable outcome is like a sports competition without a scoreboard or scorekeeper.
Apart from being measurable, it is also important that you are paying attention to the right metrics.
Not all data is relevant to your goals.
Each social media activity should accomplish a measurable task to ensure you are making progress.
As ambitious as we should always get, we should keep it at the back of our minds that we are setting goals, not just dreaming dreams. A goal is not a goal if it is not achievable. Yes, it should challenge you, but be realistic. You may want 200 hundred thousand unique users on your blog within the next one week in your field but in your niche, it may not be realistic.
You also need to take an inventory of your resources to ensure you can accomplish your goals. Dream big and aim for the stars but keep one foot firmly based in reality.
In setting goals, it is of great essence that your goals are relevant to your business, your industry and current trends. Having 150,000 young and uppity followers on twitter may seem interesting but is actually useless if you are a B2B marketer selling enterprise-level software products to the C-suite. Goals are not just activities you want to blindly get sunk into.
An easy way to make sure that your goal is relevant is to ensure they are drawn from the set departmental goals. The departmental goals is, (hopefully) drawn from the general business goal.
There are many objectives that you can strive for in social media hence the need for them to align with your corporate goals. Not following this means you may end up being Aladdin, the social media ROI goal conjurer. Cool but not smart.
Always assign time-based constraints on your social media goals. You need a timeline to measure against and a certain level of pressure to achieve your goal. Not doing this means the deceitful, caressing hands of procrastination will hold you for a long time then suddenly leave you desolate when reality dawns on you.
Also, to successfully achieve your goals, periodically track and review your goals and make adjustments when necessary.
This may seem like a long boring process, but once you get a grip of it, it should become a breeze.