May 13, 2016 / by Katie Gaab

By 2020, social media spending will account for 21 percent of marketing budgets. But if you can’t prove your efforts are impacting business now, why would stakeholders consider approving more spending later on?

To earn greater investment in the future, you need to prove how you’re already meeting ROI goals. And while every brand’s overall goals will differ, there are a few factors all should consider.

“They could include how well your brand is building awareness and driving website traffic, inciting behaviors that drive prospects closer to conversion, or even changing perception of your brand or overall industry,” says Michelle Vangel, Cision’s vice president of insight solutions.

Not sure what you need to get started? Here’s an overview of what you’ll need to get on the right track:

1. Unified Inter-Departmental Approach

Your social presence affects everyone in your organization, from sales to customer relations to marketing. Each has its own set of goals to achieve, but that can only happen if everyone can contribute to the conversation.

For example, by collaborating with your client services department during a crisis, you might find Twitter to be your go-to response platform. Transparent communication within your organization will help you craft clear messages for your audience.

2. Presence on the Right Platforms


Your posts will get lost in the noise if you don’t know your audience. Determining which platforms are right for your brand is highly dependent on whether or not you’ve broken down departmental silos.

By getting all departments involved in your social strategy, you’ll have a more in-depth understanding of all segments of your audience. With insights coming directly from your department heads, you’ll be efficient in pinpointing why your audience uses social, who they interact with and what type of content they like to share with their followers.

Feb Hot Social campaign (ROI)_728x90

3. UTM Codes

In order to know which social efforts have had the most impact, you need to incorporate UTM codes for each platform and campaign. They can help determine if any specific campaigns led to growth in followers over time, which platforms drive the most traffic and what type of content resonates best on social.

UTM codes also help determine how many people are engaging with your brand, becoming leads and then converting into customers. You can even add UTM codes to determine which influencers have the most impact on social.

4. Monetary Value for Conversions


Each of your goals needs to be tied to a monetary value in order to prove impact on the bottom line. If you haven’t measured your social media efforts yet, start by estimating. Ask yourself what you would pay for someone to sign up for your newsletter or download your report.

If you’ve already gathered data, think about the lifetime of your customers to determine the value of a newsletter signup or report download. Remember that lifetime values can change, so whether you’ve used an estimate or previous data, be sure to continue updating your values over time.

5. Integrated, Intuitive Technology

How many tools does it take to track social ROI? Two-thirds of marketers use three different tools. But it doesn’t have to be that complicated.

Avoid inaccurate reporting and incomplete data by investing in one intuitive tool to help you with all stages of the social media lifecycle from publishing to analytics. Plus, being able to track your efforts in real time will allow you to pinpoint opportunities you may not have otherwise considered leveraging had you been monitoring all your accounts manually.

Social Ads__Twitter_Lead Gen_800x200_ad2

Images via Pixabay: 1, 2, 3


Most Recent Posts

Cision Blogs Topics

  • Communications Best Practices

    Get the latest updates on PR, communications and marketing best practices.

  • Cision Product News

    Keep up with everything Cision. Check here for the most current product news.

  • Executive Insights

    Thought leadership and communications strategy for the C-suite written by the C-suite.

  • Media Blog

    A blog for and about the media featuring trends, tips, tools, media moves and more.

About Katie Gaab

Katie Gaab is a content marketing specialist for Cision. Previously the senior editor for Help A Reporter Out (HARO), she enjoys connecting audiences to exciting, new content. She's a dancer, avid concert-goer, foreign language nerd and book worm. Find her on Twitter @kathryngaab.