Moving the Needle: Showing the Impact of Your Work
You might post awesome social media promos, but if you can’t demonstrate the impact of what you’ve done, why should anyone believe that you’re worth your paycheck? It can be challenging to show a direct impact with social media. The nature of these platforms is that people are browsing, having some fun, and not seriously considering buying anything or registering for something. It’s hard to actually do stuff on your phone (if you’re over 40).
Get creative. Think of all the ways you might be moving the needle. I’ve been diligently tagging URLs with Omniture code to show how much traffic social media is driving to our website. Normally that’s good enough to demonstrate ROI, but we had a situation that was a bit different. We needed to raise awareness of a registration process, and we wanted to try to show that our promotions helped drive registration. Unfortunately, the Omniture data was showing only about 5% of registrations as a direct result of a social media promo. (Which makes, sense, see above.)
The data WAS showing that more than half of traffic was driven by search engines. So I told everyone, “We’re raising AWARENESS of the registration process, and people are then searching for it later to register.” Everyone seemed happy with that explanation, but I needed more. I NEED a chart to prove my point! I can’t prove that the search engine traffic was a result of anything we did. Anything less makes me vaguely uncomfortable. (Note to self: Create a chart for husband’s “Honey Do” list.)
So I thought, “I wonder if we can show some kind of correlation in the number or reach of our promotions to the number of registrations.” I was not optimistic because the weekly results that I had seen didn’t seem to show an impact. Apparently I was only checking the last 2 weeks of the campaign.
The final result chart is impressive but you’re seeing the result of hours of work. We compiled over 200 promos and Press releases to complete the chart. Don’t be discouraged if your first “hunch” doesn’t pay off. Many times it won’t and you’ll end up with a chart that doesn’t make any valuable point at all. Keep trying! It’s worth it in the end.