Where Are Those Orders Coming From?

I’m at BlogWorld Expo East in NY this week, and have had a fantastic time learning from some incredible speakers, while also meeting some online friends in real life for the first time.

And while there are many topics that I’ve been exploring in the various sessions, one of the biggest that has stood out to me is the question of what we’re measuring, and how well we’re measuring it. Because you see, as business folks, if we’re going to invest time in social media, there has to be a payoff. It’s not enough to say “I have all these friends online so it must be working.” You need to be able to show how those friends translate into a benefit for your business.

There’s no magic formula for this, because so much is based on your individual goals. Are you striving for brand recognition, increased sales, donations…the list of what you COULD be working towards goes on. But it’s important to know what your goal is so you can measure progress towards that goal.

Some measurement is based on a simple click conversion. I spoke to someone about a product on Facebook, they clicked over to my personal website, and they completed a purchase. Easy, right?

But that’s so rarely the way it happens.

Instead, we might be friends on Facebook, and I talk about your products or the business opportunity. Later, when you have the need, you remember our conversation. So you either call me, or go to the website, or attend a party. Somehow, you place the order. But we don’t have a mechanism right now to attribute that order to our social media efforts.

One of my big takeaways from this conference is finding a way to link offline conversions to our online efforts. It’s not hard to do, but we need to be thinking about how we’ll do it. This starts by asking questions at the point of conversion…where did you hear about us? Simple, right? Companies should add the question to their sales receipt forms. Online, it should be added to the checkout page. That data then needs to be entered in with the order, so we can track those orders/signups back to their source.

There’s a lot more that needs to be taken into consideration when putting into place a measurement program, and lots of tools to help you do it. I’ll be spending time looking at what more my company, Jen Fong Media, LLC can do for our clients’ measurement programs.

Fun stuff. 🙂

So how do you measure the success of your social media marketing efforts? Do you rely on just the growth of your fan base? Or do you measure conversions to sales or recruits? Would love to read your thoughts in the comments below.

p.s. Want to be part of the goodness of BlogWorld? We’re raising money for Joplin tornado victims, and you can donate through our link to the Red Cross too! Simply go to http://bwecares.causevox.com/ to donate. Thank you for making a difference!

2 Responses to Where Are Those Orders Coming From?
  1. Scentsy
    June 6, 2011 | 3:01 am

    A big part of my business is contributed to social media. Like any business the main goal is to reach as many people as possible but considering the way our generations are evolving in order to “keep up” I think social media is a must. It is time consuming but so worth it. 🙂

  2. MeLissa
    May 27, 2011 | 4:06 pm

    It’s probably just the accountant in me (I’m a recovering CPA – tax season free for four years!), but I actually do keep track of this. I have a spreadsheet where I track my party related statistics including sales. After the total sales from parties, I have cells to track of orders that originated from social media efforts (usually these are just the first order someone places after they’ve found me…typically due to a conversation on facebook. Subsequent orders I consider as reorders), reorders, etc. to arrive at my total commissionable sales for the month. As of right now, I can attribute 6% of my sales for the year to social media. Kind of cool, huh?

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