One of the drawbacks to social media marketing is that it is difficult to measure results. Difficult, but not impossible.
For example, let’s say you have 2,000 Twitter followers. You know that your click through rate on links to your website from Twitter is 10%. That is, for every link you post to Twitter that leads back to your website, you see 200 clicks or visitors to your website from Twitter via that link. There are several problems with this number.
First, not all 200 of those clicks are necessarily your followers. If 10% of your followers retweeted your link, some of those visitors to your website could be followers of followers or even followers of your followers’ followers. But that’s not all.
Once those visitors land on your website, how do you know that purchases made are directly related to your link on Twitter? Unless you have a dedicated landing page – one that can only be accessed via Twitter – you don’t. Most analytics programs will give you outstanding reports on visitors, unique visitors, traffic sources and conversions. The problem is, you can’t always tell whether a particular conversion is from a specific traffic source or from another traffic source. And that’ what makes makes social media metrics difficult.
So what’s the solution? Should you abandon or give up on social media because you can’t measure results with pinpoint accuracy? No, that would be a grave error. But you should take all measurements with a grain of salt and test as much as you can. Don’t take anything for granted. Social media can produce results even if you cannot accurately measure them every step of the way.