Setting Social Media Goals In 2015: Why Engagement Trumps Impressions

Happy new year, the time of finalizing 2015 plans! Whether it’s a specific social program or a general channel campaign, the first two questions in goal-setting should always be “What are my goals?” and “How do I measure them?”

Shifting into 2015 with Facebook creating bundled posts, reducing promotional posts, and new platforms offering paid opportunities, we’re beginning to see new answers to those key metric questions and setting social media goals in 2015.

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Impressions are LESS important

For the past few years, social media marketing focused primarily on Impressions and Reach. While fighting ever-changing algorithms, marketers used organic and paid media to serve content to as many eyes as possible. Impressions as large numbers felt satisfying, driving content that focused on clear calls to action to elicit further Impressions and campaigns with large paid support.

Now marketers realize that Impressions do not necessarily translate into sales lift or brand advocates. In businesses that increasingly focus on the ROI of large media spends, it’s simply not enough to have a passive audience. The focus needs to be connection to audience, thus focus shifts to Engagement.

Focus on True Engagement

With Facebook announcing that all brand content will now be seen as promotional, marketers must adjust goals to focus on Engagements instead of mass numbers of eyeballs on a post. How are fans truly engaging with content? Are views translating into actions and advocacies?

While big numbers may feel nice, brands see higher advocacies and conversions from true fans, aka those that go out of their way to interact with social media posts. In turn, those interactions will organically create higher Impressions through Shares and Retweets.

The responsibility of eliciting advocacies falls to Community Managers, strategists, and creative teams to create content that resonates with Fans and Followers.

Messaging Must Support New KPIs

The clear way to support the focus on Engagement is appropriately supportive content. Without aligning copy and creative, reaching set goals may prove frustrating and difficult.

For example, including images in Tweets boosts Retweets by 35% and photos receive 87% of Shares on Facebook. It is clear that content with images can successfully drive Engagement. Additionally, creative calls to action are not a thing of the past. Give Fans and Followers a clear idea of what to do next. However, be careful not to like-bait as the Facebook algorithm punishes routine users of basic calls to action.

More than ever, it is important to ensure those creating the content are aligned with strategy. This collaboration will grow successful campaigns in the New Year.

Ignite Social Media