28 February, 2013

How to Calculate the ROI of Your Social Media Marketing Campaign


Running a social media campaign is often a very expensive affair. That is, if you take social media seriously. Specialized marketing companies around the world are finding ways and means to convince big businesses to get into social media campaign lest they feel left out. When competitors do it, you will have to do it, and do it on a large scale if you have to retain your lead. But the catch is managements will demand to know what the benefits will be like.

Is it really Possible to Calculate the Worth of Social Media?

Social media brings in benefits that cannot be measured like revenues from physical sales. It is like calculating the worth of kinship, your relationship with your wife, the cost of having a friend, and price for happiness. But, there is a way out sill and smart marketing companies are discovering it to convince their managements in this regards. And one of the ways to do it is present them with mathematical figures.

Why is it Tedious to Calculate the Worth of Social Media?

The problem with calculating the worth of a campaign is to measure revenue against the expenditure. If social media campaigns bring in direct sales, then the sale can be directly attributed to it. But, that seldom happens. When customers sign up for your company’s products or services they will not tell you the reasons for doing that. At best campaigns can bring only incremental gains, and that you can attribute to social media campaign. But again, what happens to the non-social media efforts which progresses simultaneously?

The Need for Experts and Tools

In the wake of enormous uncertainties, the best you can do to calculate Rate of Return (ROI) is to leave it experts if you can afford the cost, or better you use some specialized tools for making the calculation. These tools take several factors into consideration, like calculating the incremental rise in visitors to your website, the time they spent on your website, and finally enquires they made. Collectively all these information play a major role in calculating the ROI.

Free Vs Paid Tools Vs Google Analytics

There are numerous ROI calculation tools in the internet. They are often presented as apps. Some are free to use, while other collect a monthly fee. There still others that you can install at your webpage hosting servers. The free ones generally don’t live up to users’ expectations. The reason being they lack extensive documentation. The next you can consider is the monthly fee based services. These service providers are a little better, but you cannot always feel comfortable with the numbers they churn out.

In these circumstances it will be best to use Google Analytics. The biggest advantage is it is free to use. There is also a paid version to Google Analytics which will cost you substantially. Unless you are professional company doing research for other, the annual fee will simply not match your budget, especially for small businesses.

Google Analytics for Small Business

Google Analytics is increasingly being used by small businesses owning websites. If you are not calculating your ROI by the minute, it will generally satisfy most businesses’ requirements. The most important thing however is they will not cost you anything. All that you need to do is open an account and start using it. If you already have a Google mail account, you can use it for getting ROI information, though you shouldn't expect them to come by the minute.

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