I’m at the DSA Communications and Internet Marketing Seminar this week. What an incredible 2 days of sharing social media as it specifically applies to the direct selling industry. Some of the highlights for me included hearing Mari Smith speak, and the Power Users Roundtable, which I had the honor of facilitating. How cool to hear some of the greatest social media players in our industry sharing their experiences and learning from one another!
One of the points that really hit home for me yesterday was the importance of measuring the return on your social media investment. Just like we’ve seen in many other industries, direct selling is now struggling to figure out what means a social media campaign has been successful. Is traffic enough? Or does that traffic has to do something? How do you measure sentiment? Is that important?
All of these questions, however, are not the starting point when it comes to determining ROI. The most important piece, and the starting point, is the goal, and this goes for both companies, as well as individual direct sellers. What is it that you want to accomplish through social media? Is it greater brand recognition? Increased sales? Reorders and rebookings? Increased recruiting? Until you know what your goal is, there is absolutely no way to determine whether or not your social media campaign has been successful. There are way too many companies diving into social media and setting up a Facebook page without having any idea what they want to gain from the experience.
Once you know what your goal is, then you can put into place specific things to measure your progress towards the goal. No matter what the goal is, however, Google Analytics is a critical component of the overall measurement plan. You MUST be able to track where people are coming from when they get to your website, and whether or not (and how) they convert into a customer or recruit. If you don’t have a way to measure that, you will have no way of knowing how successful your efforts are.
Believe it or not, one key to success in social media is having a website that encourages the conversion you seek. If there are too many things going on on your website, people may not know what to do. I absolutely love the Pampered Chef website, and suggest to many of my clients that they emulate it, because it’s so simple and clean. There are really only 3 things you can do from that site on the home page…shop, book, or join. They have recently added some value-add pieces (recipe videos and the like) but still it’s very clear to the customer what to do.
Only by determining your goals first, and then putting into place the tools that will help you measure progress towards your goal, will you ever be able to determine whether or not your social media efforts are successful. And if you can’t measure progress against the bottom line, you may be wasting your time. And that’s something none of us have enough time to do.
What do you think?