Ever heard the saying “you can’t manage what you can’t measure”? This mantra couldn’t be any truer than when it comes to social media. To really know if all the time and effort you’ve invested in your social media is actually paying off you need to set goals for what you want to accomplish…and measure the results against those goals to determine if your strategy is actually working. Establishing social media goals will also help you to determine the voice, tone and types of content that you'll share on the various social media channels.
Here are some steps you can take to get started with goal setting for your social media strategy.
Determine your objective.
The first and most critical step is to determine your objective, which is very different than a goal. Your objective should define what you want to achieve with your overall social media strategy. Examples of objectives could include building brand awareness, improving the customer service experience and strengthening your online reputation.
Establish goals using the S.M.A.R.T method.
The S.M.A.R.T goal framework refers to setting goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely. To help define your social media goals, and clarify what is required to achieve success, your goals should be:
- Specific: You’ll want your goals to be specific and not open to interpretation. For example, if you want to increase your social
media followers, specify how many new followers you want to earn and on which social media networks.
- Measurable: Determine which metrics you will use to measure your social media success. Instead of assuming that your
strategy is working, back it up with numbers.
- Attainable: Your goals need to be realistic and within reach. Don't assume earning 200 retweets a week is attainable if you only have 400 followers on Twitter.
- Relevant: The goals you set need to be relevant to your company's overall social media objective.
- Timely: Establish deadlines for reaching your goals to stay accountable for following through.
Before you begin the process of establishing goals, take the time to conduct a social media audit of your existing strategy to see what's working and identify areas that need improvement. This information will help you to establish baseline targets and set appropriate goals for improvement.
By following these steps for establishing and implementing social media goals, you'll be well on your way to improving your ROI.