Social Media Marketing ROI: How to Measure Social for Conversions

social media marketing roi

Your social campaign is just about ready to go. Tweets are loaded in the queue. Ready to be Buffered. LinkedIn sponsored content is all lined up, too.

Posting on your social media profiles three to five times a day is nice.

Responding to engagement once an hour is nice, too.

What’s really nice though is when you see a conversion happen because of your social media efforts, whether that’s the consistent posting you’re doing or the speedy response time with your engagement.

Money is to be made with social media, it just takes a lot of measurement, strategy reconstruction, some more measuring, a bit more reconstructing, and a big sprinkle of engagement.

It certainly isn’t as easy to see ROI from social media efforts like it is from say a pay-per-click or local search campaign.

That’s thanks to the many “vanity” metrics that come with social media.

[bctt tweet=”Likes on a post are great, but not so great if your primary goal on social media is to drive traffic to the blog or increase shoe sales.” username=””]

Vanity metrics (e.g., likes, shares, comments) can muddle up the metric measurements making it extra difficult to uncover any real ROI on social.

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So, how can you measure if your social media is producing ROI?

We’ll answer that question in a bit in this article, but before you begin to measure your social media marketing ROI, you first need to develop a social media marketing goal and learn how to effectively use the channels.

If you join our practical and result oriented digital marketing class, you’ll learn how to create effective social media strategies that are goal oriented and ROI friendly.

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Let’s break this apart.

What does ROI Mean in Social Media Marketing?

social media marketing roi

Social media ROI is a metric showing the return on investment a company can expect to make from the time, money and effort the company spends on social media marketing.

It is usually a sum of money, but some companies view ROI as a non-monetary value such as comments or newsletter signups.

Over the past several years, as social media has become more entrenched in various aspects of business operations, business executives have often questioned the dollar value of investing in social media.

However, some marketers insist that it is quite possible to calculate social media ROI, as long as all aspects of the business established agreed-upon social media metrics or key performance indicators and conversion rates that are tied to business objectives.

But, it doesn’t end there…

Others have argued that social media ROI should account for less direct benefits such as new product ideas, broader brand exposure and audience reach, and greater customer engagement and positive customer sentiment overall.

While these measures may be difficult to tie to specific dollar or naira amounts, they can help companies reach revenue goals nonetheless.

[bctt tweet=”In this sense, what social media ROI means for your own business depends entirely on your objectives.” username=””]

Why Social Media ROI Measurement is Important for your Business

social media marketing roi

There is a number of reasons why measuring social media ROI should be a priority in your business.

The social media marketing environment is becoming increasingly competitive. As companies are vying for audiences’ attention, you need to pour more and more budget into your campaigns in order to stand out.

A bigger spend, in turn, often requires proof that it’s delivering tangible results – and this is where measuring social media ROI comes in.

Analyzing your social media revenue can enable you to support budget requests by showing that your investments are beneficial to your business.

On the other hand, if your ROI is low, it can help you pinpoint the inefficiencies of your social media strategy and start making improvements.

But that’s not all. Measuring social media ROI can also help you determine how much value you’re delivering to your audience.

A high number of converting users is evidence that your message is relevant and compelling, which shows that quality content plays a big role in earning social media revenue.

This proves that measuring ROI is integral for growth, both for the business and the marketer.

Let’s put all of these into a small importance box.

Keeping an eye on social media revenue can help you to:

  • Demonstrate the value of social media marketing to your company
  • Prove that your social media marketing strategies are effective
  • Identify areas of your strategy that are particularly successful to shift more budget towards them
  • Pinpoint aspects of your strategy that aren’t working and fix them
  • Support social media budget requirements.

Having realized the immense importance of ROI measurement in social media marketing, the next task would be…

How  to Measure Your Social Media Marketing Efforts

Measuring your social media marketing ROI isn’t impossible. It may be muddled with vanity metrics, but it is possible to uncover real conversions and quantify efforts when you do this.

The key to gaining real ROI from social media can be produced with these simple steps.

Social Media Marketing ROI #1: Define Your Social Media Goal

Businesses can accomplish dozens of goals by using social media.

Here are a few of the most common and measurable goals.

Increase Brand Awareness

This is going to track your business profile’s fan/following growth, engagement growth, and mentions over time.

If everything has increased over a designated time period, then you are on track to hitting your goal.

Whereas, if growth remains the same your brand awareness is not reaching a larger audience and, therefore, not indicating any gained ROI.

Attract Website Traffic

For website traffic tracking, pick a specific page or section that you want to increase traffic to (e.g., the homepage, a specific product category page, the entire blog, or the contact page) and then measure the amount of traffic landing on the page from your social media.

[bctt tweet=”Overall website traffic is great to track, but you really want to narrow in and define exactly where to push your social media followers so you can easily measure the traffic increase and referral source.” username=””]

Generate New Leads

The goal here is to turn your social media efforts into leads, whether it’s getting people to:

  • Fill out a contact form (trial, demo, consultation, etc.).
  • Sign up for a webinar.
  • Download an ebook, report, whitepaper, or some other type of content.
  • Subscribe to an email newsletter.

These social media posts can include a link to a landing page that has a form and track how many form fill outs are coming from a social media referral source.

You’ll also be able to track post clicks and do a bit of math to determine conversions and acquisition rate per lead.

Find New Influencers to Work With

Every business (big and small) should focus on obtaining influencers on social media right now.

Influencers can be so valuable to your arsenal.

Make it a goal on social media to scout and create relationships with new influencers.

Generate X Sales

Just to designate that you want to generate “sales” thanks to social posting isn’t specific enough.

Chose exactly how many sales you want to happen and what kind of sales.

For example, a realistic goal here could be that you want to generate 25 new student sales for a professional digital marketing training like ours coming from Instagram.

Pick the product/service and how many sales you want to achieve.

Social Media Marketing ROI #2: Define your Goal Timeline

social media marketing roi

Please don’t make your timeline to accomplish a social media goal only one week.

Be realistic here.

Try a 30-day social media campaign, or even stretch it out through a quarter.

Certain goals like direct product sales may take a bit longer than one week to produce, especially if you aren’t putting any money towards social ads to help.

Plus, you need to gain metrics over time to learn how to better strategize the campaign if you aren’t consistently hitting your goal week-to-week.

If the first run through doesn’t produce the ROI you want, then analyze the metrics you received from that first run through and notate what worked and fix what didn’t. Your timeline may have been the cause.

Let’s look at the goals above and put a few realistic timelines on them.

Increased Brand Awareness

  • Goal: Increase reach on Facebook by 40 percent by the end of a new month.

Increased Website Traffic

  • Goal: Increase traffic to “New Items” website page from Pinterest by 50 percent in Q4.

Gain New Leads

  • Goal: Generate 500 new leads from Facebook and 150 new leads from Twitter during the “Digital Marketing Bootcamp” from August through September.

Find New Influencers

  • Goal: Designate two free influencers and 1 new paid contracted influencer in Q3 to promote new skincare line in Q4.

Generate Sales From Social Posting

  • Goal: Increase sales for digital marketing course by 12 percent in Q3 due to social media campaign “Pre-Holiday Blow Out” using Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Social Media Marketing ROI #3: Develop a Social Media Strategy Based on the Goal

social media marketing roi

Certain social media goals will come with certain strategies.

[bctt tweet=”In order to achieve up to a 12 percent increase in sales from social media, you’ll need to put in a completely different effort than you would for trying to accomplish the new influencer goal.” username=””]

Just as with any digital marketing strategy, the efforts must match the goal.

Here are a few realistic strategy steps to make in order to accomplish our five original social media goals.

Increased Brand Awareness

  • Increase posting on social media by 50 percent (if you usually post 3 to 5 times a week plan to post 6 to 10 times to increase reach).
  • Follow 10 new people on social media a day (relevant to your industry and customers).
  • Engage with people who mention your brand by commenting and following them.
  • Run ads on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to increase post reach and new followers.

Increased Website Traffic

  • Run a remarketing campaign that targets website visitors on Facebook.
  • Update bio link in Instagram to the page you’re trying to increase traffic to (target page).
  • Include shortened links in all of your social media posts to the target page.
  • Add clear calls to action in each social media posts that give incentive to target page.
  • Conduct a social media ad campaign to direct users to target page (website traffic conversion).

Gain New Leads

  • Run a remarketing campaign that targets website visitors on Facebook.
  • Clarify incentive for filling out the form in social media posts.
  • Run social media ads with goal conversion to generate new leads (use Facebook’s pixel to track).
  • Work with partner companies to cross-promote on social media networks and include link to landing page form.
  • Include shortened links in all of your social media posts to the landing page form.

Find New Influencers

  • Create a list of 100 new social media profiles to follow on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. They should have a minimum of 10,000 followers and be relevant to your industry.
  • Follow and engage with these new social media profiles commenting on their posts and networking with them.
  • Use tools (e.g., Mention, SEMrush) to determine who is talking about your brand. Then, reach out to them and discuss the opportunity of sending them products/getting feedback.

Generate Sales From Social Posting

  • Run remarketing ads to customer database that encourage them to purchase from the new product line.
  • Schedule social media posts that inform followers about new product line and how to purchase.
  • Include a discount or promo in social media posts with a link to product line website page.
  • Send post content to new influencers and ask them to share on their social media channels to promote sales of the new product line.

Social Media Marketing ROI #4: Measure Goal and Performance

social media marketing roi

While some goals are easy to measure such as whether you gained five new influencers, other goals are a bit more difficult to track down where the success or failures came from.

Luckily, there are certain tools and metrics that will help determine if you’ve accomplished your goal thanks to your social media efforts.

Let’s look at our original five goals and which metrics/tools we should be using to measure ROI.

Increased Brand Awareness

  • Check reach and overall engagement metrics in your social media analytics to see if reach has increased.
  • Use tools to track brand mentions and determine if positive mentions increased.

Increased Website Traffic

  • Check Google Analytics for an increase in website traffic.
  • Check referral source to determine if the top referring sources of website traffic are coming from social media networks.

Gain New Leads

  • Check CRM database for any new leads and lead sources (if from social media).
  • Track post click engagements to see how many clicks are leading from social media to landing pages.

Find New Influencers

  • If any new contracts with influencers were signed.
  • Check Excel doc for any progress on relationship building with influencers.

Generate Sales From Social Posting

  • Check social media ad campaigns for ROI.
  • Track user visits to connect referral source, to a landing page, to conversion.
  • Use Google Analytics to track if any sales goals were achieved.

Social Media Marketing ROI #5: Don’t Stop Tracking Your Metrics

social media marketing roi

[bctt tweet=”Whether or not your goals were met within the desired timeline, it’s important to keep tracking social media metrics.” username=””]

A lot can change on social media so have a clear vision of what is going on, all of the time, and when ROI opportunities arise.

When I say a lot can change, I mean groundbreaking things like:

  • What kind of conversations people are having about your brand, whether positive or negative.
  • If there are any new and potential influencers you should connect with that are talking about your brand.
  • Learning what kind of post content your fans like best (image, text, video, short text, long text, etc.).
  • What days you’re receiving the most engagement on so you can focus your efforts on the days and times that matter most.
  • What kind of message you’re putting out there and what kind of messaging followers are digesting – does it align?

What you need to calculate your social media ROI

social media marketing roi

The right tools are as important as the right method of calculating social media ROI. Here’s what you can use:

  • Facebook Ads with Facebook Pixel – add Facebook Pixel to your website’s key pages to see how many people interacted with your Facebook ads and which ads led to conversions
  • Google Analytics with UTM parameters – add Google Analytics UTM parameters to your social media ads’ URL to find out how much traffic and conversions your social media marketing efforts are generating
  • Socialbakers Ads Benchmarks – measure your social media ROI in context by understanding how the return on Facebook ads investment is fluctuating day-by-day across regions and industries

How do you identify good social media ROI?

Determining the difference between a good social media ROI and a bad one can be challenging.

After all, there’s no universal number that would stand for a desirable social media ROI and a revenue that’s sufficient to sustain your business might be too little to put you ahead of the game.

[bctt tweet=”To understand how good your social media ROI really is, you need to benchmark it against the market.” username=””]

This way, you’ll know how much your competitors are investing in their social media marketing efforts, what they’re getting in return, and how your own revenue stacks up.

Monitoring your social media ROI in the context of the market has one more important benefit – it enables you to detect and act on bigger trends.

The social media landscape is constantly evolving: there are algorithm changes, seasonal campaigns and new competitors – all of which can impact your revenue.

Keeping an eye on the revenue fluctuations within the market will help you determine whether the changes to your ROI fall within the benchmarks or if you’re the only one seeing an impact and should make strategy adjustments.


Tracking the return on investment of social media is no easy feat. The majority of social media professionals don’t even have it laid down.

You can’t and shouldn’t start any social media campaigns without having a clear goal in mind. Goals will help you establish what return on investment looks like for a given campaign.

Next, be sure to link your Google Analytics tracking to your social accounts. This will give you data on what platforms are giving you the best results on-site.

All of these and more are what you’ll learn when you register to join our next digital marketing training, where you will see the entire social media marketing mix of goal decision, goal and strategy mapping and goal measurement go live.

Plus, you also enjoy 1-year support to help you get a perfect hang of these actions and redirect you whenever you derail from the process.

Your increased social media ROI reap is only a click away. Click here to learn more and join the class.

And no…Social media often won’t drive the “most sales” directly.

However, that doesn’t mean it’s any less important. You just need to know where to look to determine whether your goals are still rock solid or has overshot its track.

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*By signing up, you agree to our privacy policy and terms of service.