It’s a question we get a lot. What’s the value of a like on social media?  There are a few ways to attribute value and importance to your social media following. Whether you value consumer feedback or increased sales numbers, social can help. It’s not uncommon for marketing departments to have an unclear idea how social is (or is not) benefiting their organization. At the end of the day merely liking a brand doesn’t change behavior our impact sales – that’s not to say there is no value in a social media following.

A survey of 427 marketers at U.S. companies showed that 80% are unable to quantify the value of their social media efforts.

Social media is a marketing channel that relies both on ‘pull’ and ‘push’ marketing strategies.

Social Media can play a valuable role in your marketing mix no matter your budget. However, you must have a clear strategy in place to see results. Your strategy must take into account how you will measure success, what you will do with the information you gather, and how you will track return on your social media investment.

Likes can turn into product endorsements.

Social media did introduce the ability for everyone to listen to the marketplace. You no longer need massive research budgets to find out what your customer or potential customer thinks about your product, how they use it, or why they love it. People are talking about your brand, have a plan in place for how you can and will use those endorsements. People today trust recommendations from their own personal circle of influencers.

Likes can illuminate the best path for an advertising strategy.

Through organic posting and a little bit of social listening, you can greatly inform your advertising campaigns. By remaining aware of who likes your content you can start building a real demographic picture of what your most valuable customer looks like. How current customers use your product and what problems you are helping them solve. All of this is crucial information to consider before undertaking any advertising campaign in any medium – traditional or digital.

A direct line of consumer feedback from your best customers.

Social media can also help you on the final and sometimes most neglected part of the buyer’s journey – post purchase. Your social can act as your first line of customer service and follow-up. Chances are your customer will already be doing this. By being prepared for this post-purchase relationship is key for word of mouth campaigns and your brand health in general.

Conclusion

Social Media can play a valuable role in your marketing mix no matter your budget. However, you must have a clear strategy in place in order to see results. If you map out with your team what those results look like, what impact they will have on your business decisions, and how you will execute your strategy you will be primed to succeed in the social landscape.

Interested in reading the article that sparked this initial blog post? Check out “What’s the Value of a Like” by  Leslie K. JohnDaniel MochonOliver Emrich and, Janet Schwartz from the March/April 2017 edition of the Harvard Business Review.

 


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