Just like every other aspect of your marketing campaign, you need to know if your social media strategy is on track. Measuring certain metrics will tell you key information about what is working well and where you need to make improvements.

Too many businesses believe they can manage social media through intuition alone. Others are unsure about how to use tools to gain data, leading them to only measure the simplest metrics, such as number of followers. If this sounds like you, it’s time to step out of the dark and use the following to enhance your social media marketing strategy.

1. Audience Demographics

By gaining as much data about your audience as possible, you will be able to draw up a few buyer personas that represent your ideal customers. Social media is one of the best places to gather such data, as much of the information is included in your followers’ profiles.

Useful demographic information about your audience may include:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Location
  • Language
  • Occupation
  • Income
  • Interests

Going forward, use what you have learned to post content that meets your audience’s needs and is relevant to their interests.

2. Top Platforms

There are too many social media platforms out there for you to maintain an active presence on all. Besides, it is unnecessary, as you can impact the majority of your audience by publishing on just a few platforms. Use demographics to decide the most likely platforms for your audience, and set up profiles just on these. If you notice some platforms are driving only a small amount of traffic to your website, give them up in order to focus your efforts on platforms that are leading to results.

3. Social Media Engagement

Your social media accounts can also tell you which pieces of content are resonating best with your audience. Check engagement, including likes and shares, as well as any increase or decrease in followers coinciding with a release of a piece of content. This will help you figure out what topics your audience finds most interesting and what types of content they prefer.

4. Volume

Volume takes things one step further than engagement, by encompassing messages to your brand and mentions of your brand elsewhere on a social media platform. For instance, you can use the metric in Facebook insights “people talking about this” to count the number of unique users posting about your page. Whenever volume is high, take advantage by posting more.

5. Hashtags

Hashtags may have gained their popularity on Twitter, but they are now used across social media. Using generic and trending hashtags helps you assign posts to categories and increase your visibility. Using your own hashtags can increase attention to your campaign and your brand as a whole. In any case, you need to use hashtags that are effective and improve the performance of your posts. By turning to your analytics reports, you can find which hashtags are leading to the greatest engagement in order to use these more often.

6. Posting Time

You can find guidelines as to the best time of day, and the best days of the week, to post to each social media platform. What is right for you will vary slightly from the average though, based on who makes up your audience. Factors like occupation, location, and age all play a role. To determine what works best for your audience, you will need to post at different times to see when you gain the most engagement. Repeat this over several weeks to avoid drawing false conclusions — for instance, you need to bear in mind that high engagement could be due to an interesting post rather than the time of posting.

7. Conversions

One of the most crucial metrics is conversion rate. This will allow you to see if your efforts on social media are leading to real results. Count a conversion as whatever action you want your followers to take after viewing your content. Examples include:

  • Downloading premium content
  • Registering for a webinar
  • Calling or emailing your company to request more information about a product or service
  • A sale

8. Return on Investment

Measuring your ROI will ensure your profits exceed the money you allocate to your social media strategy. It is possible to measure ROI to a high degree of accuracy by setting up goal tracking with analytics software. Monitor all sales and other actions that have monetary value originating from your social media accounts. Compare this to the total of the expenses of your social media campaign, including costs related to paying staff, creating content, running ads, and using paid tools.

These are just some of the metrics you can use to track and gain better insight into the success of your social media marketing strategy. Depending on the platforms you use, your audience, and your objectives, others may be just as critical.