If you’re using social selling as part of your marketing strategy, you’ve already gotten started on the right track — but if you aren’t analyzing your results, you may be missing out.
Background: Social selling is a way for sales professionals to use social media to connect with prospects, by providing valuable content to them.
Since social selling and buying are becoming increasingly common, many company leaders are using LinkedIn to promote their businesses. With more than half a billion business professionals on the site, LinkedIn has evolved into one of the best content marketing platforms for small- and medium-sized businesses. In fact, according to a study by the Content Marketing Institute, 78 percent of B2B marketers said that it’s the most effective social media platform for content marketing.
Using a platform is one thing, but if you aren’t tracking the progress of such efforts, you may not know whether your LinkedIn campaign is working or not. Check these tips to discover how to measure and track your marketing efforts on LinkedIn.
What are LinkedIn Analytics?
LinkedIn Analytics include a variety of metrics, such as followers, clicks, shares and comments, that represent the performance of your company’s LinkedIn page. The ads that you run on the platform, content that you publish and the visitors to your company page are all captured by these metrics. And tracking these analytics will be essential when determining what content your target audience identifies with.
LinkedIn Analytics are divided into three main categories, and each category reports on a different aspect of your LinkedIn page. (After logging into your company page, you can find the analytics dropdown on the top menu.)
Updates: In this section, the following metrics can help you determine if your posts are generating customer engagement:
- Update Title: The title of the post
- Posted by: The person who posted the content
- Created: The publishing date
- Impressions: The number of times a post was seen by a user, including revisits
- Video Views: When three or more seconds of a video was viewed, or the Call-to-Action (CTA) button was clicked
- Clicks: The number of times your post or brand was viewed
- Click Through Rate (CTR): Total clicks divided by impressions
- Likes: The number of likes on your post
- Comments: The number of comments on your post
- Shares: The number of times your post was shared
- Follows: The number of people who click ‘follow’ on your sponsored post
- Engagement Rate: Total impressions including clicks, likes, comments, shares and follows
It’s important to have a well-defined strategy before posting updates, which includes a purpose and direction.
Followers: These metrics tell you who is following your page:
- Total Followers: Overall followers of your page
- Organic Followers: Followers acquired without sponsorship/ad spend
- Sponsored Followers: Followers acquired through paid ads
- Follower Demographics: Demographics of the followers of your page based on location, industry, job function, company size and more
- Follower Trends: A line chart that depicts when followers were added over time
Visitors: In this section, the metrics tell you about people who have landed on your LinkedIn page. Note that these metrics don’t provide data on the content.
- Page Views: Total number of views of your page, including your career page
- Unique Visitors: Unique visitors to your page, excluding multiple visits from the same user
- Visitor Metrics: A line chart that shows you the number of page views over time
- Visitor Demographics: Demographics of your page visitors; this is similar to Follower Demographics
Which Metrics Should You Track?
With so many available metrics, it’s easy to get confused. To simplify things, let’s trim these down to the most important ones, so it becomes easy for you to monitor the health of your LinkedIn marketing efforts. For most businesses, these are typically the five most essential metrics to track:
Impressions: Impressions are the total number of times your post has been viewed by visitors, and this includes repeat visitors as well. This means that if a visitor has viewed your post three times, it will count as three impressions, but only one unique impression.
The impressions metric can help you gain additional insights that allow you to:
- Identify the best times and days to post content
- Determine which posts to sponsor (based on reviewing the organic posts that are resonating with your existing followers)
- Visualize the trajectory of your marketing campaigns; in case of a downward trend, you will get to know that your content is not compelling enough for your readers
Click Through Rate (CTR): CTR is the total number of clicks a post receives divided by the total number of impressions. This measures the percentage of people who see your post and click through to learn more. Essentially, it tells you whether your post resonated with your audience.
Engagement Rate: This metric is great for identifying the quality and relevancy of your content. The higher the engagement rate, the more interesting and relevant your audience finds your content.
Engagement Rate also helps identify what resonates with your audience and allows you to create more of what they wish to see. It’s a good idea to play with images and videos. Images usually receive higher engagement than a standard text post.
Follower Demographics: This metric lets you know if you're reaching the right audience. It allows you to see whether your audience comes from a small or large business, what job function they have within their company, whether they are the decision-makers and even their location.
By combining Follower Demographics with CTR and Engagement Rate, you can determine who engages with your content the most and you can build your posts specifically for them.
Total and Organic Followers: It’s obvious that if someone follows your company page, the probability of them seeing your posts goes up exponentially. This is why it’s essential to actively try to increase your total followers. A high number of followers (total and organic) also suggests strong brand credibility to future customers.
The follower metrics chart shows both the total followers and the trend in gaining followers, and illuminates which posts generated new followers. And once you know which posts generated the most followers, you can create a feedback loop, which allows you to improve the effectiveness of your content marketing efforts.
Finally, in order to demonstrate how effective your marketing is, you need to start by including the right metrics in your social media reports. And that completely depends on the goals you’ve set — whether it’s boosting credibility among peers or promoting awareness of your brand.