In business, those numbers could be profits or customer acquisition costs. In human resources, they could be employee retention rates. In sports, they could be points or win-loss records.
In regards to your company’s digital efforts, do you know what numbers matter?
At ECPR, we work with our clients to define goals and key audiences for their digital efforts to help direct campaign strategy. That strategy helps us identify which metrics to track to gauge our success. The most popular digital metrics we track include:
Do you know how many people are part of your digital communities and how those communities are growing?
On digital channels such as Facebook and Twitter, we keep track of the number of likes or follows a page has, how and if that community is growing over time and if there are notable spikes or falls in community size. Ideally, we like to see digital communities growing at a steady rate. If community size is stagnating, we work with a client to make adjustments to their content strategy and ensure that their digital channels are interesting and engaging.
Impressions & Reach
Do you know how many people are viewing your content?
Often, clients don’t know the difference between impressions and reach. Reach is the number of people who have seen your content. Impressions are the number of times your content has been viewed. Because a single person can view a piece of content multiple times, the number of impressions will always be greater than the number of people reached. At ECPR, we work with clients at the start of a campaign to set baselines on these metrics. We then set goals to increase those numbers at a steady rate through a well-developed content strategy.
Do you know how often people see your content and act on it?
We encourage clients to do more than count “likes” or “retweets”; instead, we look at engagement rate as a more reliable measure of the effectiveness of digital content. Though there are different ways to calculate engagement rate, at ECPR we calculate it as the total number of engagements (likes, shares, comments, etc.) over the total number of impressions. Our goal is always to increase this percentage. If a client’s engagement rate is declining, we know that their content isn’t resonating with their audience and we need to re-evaluate our strategy.
Cost Per Action
Do you know how much you’re paying to reach your goals?
Cost Per Action is a ratio of the cost a client pays to get a digital user to perform a desired action (click a link, view an ad, etc.). At ECPR, we use this metric in paid campaigns to determine the effectiveness of our efforts. Ideally, we want Cost Per Action to be as low as possible. In fact, when we work with clients on paid social media campaigns, we monitor the campaign’s performance daily to identify and make any modifications that are needed quickly to ensure that the campaign has a low CPA.
It’s always surprising to us how few businesses monitor digital metrics and evaluate success. At ECPR, we work with clients to identify the metrics that are important to their business, track them, set reasonable goals and develop a comprehensive digital plan to achieve those goals.
We help companies of all sizes optimize their digital efforts so that they can measure the return on their investment and connect directly to their audience online. If you’re not sure if your digital efforts are paying off for your business, learn more about our digital services and how we can help.
— Cynthia Martinez is ECPR’s digital strategist.