I've been exploring different ROI and communications evaluation approaches and how they might be adapted for social media strategies. In the comments on my post about Results on Insights, Bruce Tractenberg said:
The guide is an excellent road map for designing and planning an evaluation of your overall communications plan. I particularly like the worksheet. I've been reviewing it thinking how to specifically apply or adapt it to a social media strategy.
We all know that setting objectives comes first. For social media, you need to set your objectives based on a clear understanding of how social media changes the feedback loop between your organization and stakeholders. Here's some examples of what you can accomplish with social media.
- Listening and Learning: You're monitoring what stakeholders are saying about your organization, your issue, or programs and using the information to support your marketing goals. You're testing different social media tactics and learning what works.
- Build Relationships and Issues Awareness: You’re interacting with key audiences on the social media channel in order to build awareness for your organization's brand. You’re increasing your visibility in the right areas and trying to stick in the minds of others through active interaction on many different levels.
- Improve Reputation: You want to improve how others think about your organization or issue and are responding directly to feedback through social media channels. You may also want to improve your organization's reputation as an expert by being consistently involved in discussions on topics or aggregating information that are relevant to your organization.
- Content Generation and Issues Awareness: You encourage stakeholders to create content about your organization or it's issues and share it with others and encouraging fans to talk about your issues to others (word of mouth).
- Increased Relevant Visitor Traffic and Page Rankings: You're using social media tactics to drive traffic to your organization's web site or newsletter sign up or improving search engine results or using social media channels to spread your web site or blog content.
- Taking Action or Fundraising: You're using social media tactics to spur supporters to action or donate. Remember this objective will take considerable more time and effort to be successful.
However, your social media objective needs to be "SMART" -- Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Result-Focused, and Measurable. The evaluation guide's worksheet offers an IQ test for your objectives. Do you have an example of how your organization's "SMART" social media objective? Leave it in the comments.
Jeremiah Owyang, 50 Ways to Use Social Media Listed by Objective
Dosh Dosh, Social Media Marketing Campaign Objectives and Audience Defintion
Smart Chart 3.0: An Interactive Tool To Help Nonprofits Make Smart Communications Choices