How to Develop a Data-Driven Social Marketing Strategy

By now, most of you top retailers have developed some sort of social media presence. Fun fact: Victoria’s Secret has more than 18 million Facebook fans and more than 750,000 Twitter followers.

And they’re just one of you social media crazies – good job!

But we can’t get too excited. As we mentioned in this Value of a Facebook Like post a few days ago, the number of followers you have doesn’t necessarily mean that your social media strategy is working.

Try these four calculations for a comprehensive picture of your social marketing effectiveness. Three of the measurements are softer; they’ll give you qualitative rather than quantitative information.

data driven social strategy

Conversion Rate

In social media terms, conversion rate can be measure as the number of comments or replies per post. Retailers who cultivate high numbers of comments will get to know who their audience is, how their brand attributes translate to that audience, what they’re good at and how they can add value for their customer ecosystem. A high level of engagement requires work, but understanding your customers in great detail will provide invaluable marketing insight.


Amplification measures the number of shares per post and gives you an idea of whether or not your posts are going viral. If your business has three million followers on Facebook, for instance, then your potential reach is not to only those three million. If customers share your posts, they can reach millions more unique customers. Plus, the number of shares will let you know what content or promotions your customers really value.

Applause Rate

Your applause rate is the number of “Likes,” “+1s” (in Google+) or retweets that you earn per post. From this metric, you’ll find out what content your customers value. Additionally, if your customers like, +1 or retweet a blog post, their endorsement may have the added benefit of boosting your search engine rankings.

Economic Value

Economic value gives you ROI information that you can actually quantify. You can measure metrics like your revenue per social media visit and your conversion rates from each social media platform using tools like Google Analytics, CoreIBMInsights, WebTrends or Omniture.

Social media is about connecting and acquiring new information from customers. Just don’t lose site of the importance of data and how to measure that data as you develop your social marketing strategy.