Social Media ROI: Art or Science? with David Pepper @thedavepepper #VCBuzz

Social media marketing is hard to predict or measure. So how do you calculate its ROI? Is it even possible? Let’s discuss!

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About David

David Pepper @thedavepepper founder of Pepper Productions. David Pepper’s work with major brands includes web series, commercials, corporate image, documentaries and an Emmy award winning TV series.

Connect to David on LinkedIn

Questions we discussed

Q1 How did you become a social media marketer? What’s your career path?

I’d say the day I used my smartphone to generate 10,000+ engagements while having a a cup of coffee changed my life.

I’ve been a content creator for corporate brands and non-profits since college.

When I wasn’t seeing consistent results from social media “experts” I decided to try my hand at it. 🙂

There is so much awesome content today but so much doesn’t gain traction. That’s what i try to fix.

Q2 So what’s the ROI of social media marketing? How to define it and explain it to your boss or client? How to justify a social media marketing budget?

Henry Ford said, “Those who stop marketing to save money are like those who stop a clock to save time”.

Regardless of the niche there is no substitute for true fans.

  • UGC can outperform slick production but requires additional community management.
  • Use budget to grow audience. A mix of paid for content gaining organic traction works best.

When CEOs ask Why SM and where’s the ROI? Answer: ROI of SMM starts when you become a trusted source of valuable information. You can draw a straight line between SMM and ROI but it’s not a short line.

Building lasting relationships thru social takes time but pays dividends if the community you serve perceives value. You need that value proposition to make the SMM work.

The strategy lay out business goals its the tactics that are tailored to the audience that connects. Tactics can include CTA’s, Outreach, contests. videos.. there are many.

Q3 How to measure and report on social media marketing ROI? Any tools or templates?

There are many SMM tools TIP: Factor in labor for content creation in addition to other campaign costs to know true ROI.

Kissmetrics tracks ROI coming from Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or any website.  It attributes the conversion credit to the correct social media channel, allowing you to track entire customer lifecycle.

Data from analytic tools is only valuable if it is actionable. Look at data as the blueprint for future testing and learning.

As technology, platforms and engagement strategies mature the valuable measure is continuous improvement.

Business success is never final, SMM is no exception. Tell the boss to think long term long tail.

Q4 What are your recommended social media marketing tools?

  • For content curation look at @buffer @Flipboard @feedly
  • For social monitoring a tool like @hootsuite
  • @SproutSocial is good for account management – Track growth, content performance and progress try @nuvi for larger accounts
  • Followerwonk will analyze twitter for audience segmentation and demographics
  • Manageflitter.com for searching twitter bios

Q5 Social media can be overwhelming! What are your favorite social media productivity tips?

For Productivity Empower others. Set expectations for: creation, distribution & engagement including response time.

Productivity needs time mgt. Got what it takes to service a global brand across time zones without a 24/7 strategy?

Productivity Have clear (measurable) goals and a sound strategy.

Use tools like @hootsuite and @buffer to schedule content.

Communicate with teams via @slack. Use IFTTT to command anything connected to the IoT. I like IFTTT to natively repost from Instagram to Twitter showing images rather than less visual text links.

Great point. You can do anything but should not do everything.  If everyone is your customer. No one is your customer. Focus with strategy.

Our previous ROI chats:

 

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