5 Crazy Simple Steps for Tracking Your Social ROI - Social Media Explorer
5 Crazy Simple Steps for Tracking Your Social ROI
5 Crazy Simple Steps for Tracking Your Social ROI

Be honest with me, when was the last time you really dived into your Google Analytics account? In 2014, Shareaholic reported that over 31.24% of all traffic to sites was from social media channels. Think about that for a second. One third of every single visit to your site is coming from a social channel, but over 41% of companies claimed to have no idea what impact social had on their bottom line. Uh…what?

In this world, the only thing more valuable than money is time. If you’re not tracking your social you’re generously donating your time to the land of lost tweets. This requires a level of commitment most marketers avoid entirely. Luckily we’re here to simplify things and get you on the right path as easily as possible [with a little help from our latest toolkit].

5 Crazy Simple Steps for Tracking Social ROI

ROI: What you get for what you give

ROI is a term you’ll hear floating around the marketing blog-o-sphere quite a bit. Hell, even here at SME we have over 187 articles on the damn acronym. The simplest way to explain ROI is “what you get for what you give.” It’s about breaking down your efforts to their core elements and finding their true dollar value.

The key to great marketing is focusing on what works. As we recently quoted Jay Levinson on our Instagram last week:

Imagine if you could break down the exact dollar amount Facebook brings in per hour of work and contrast it with the value of Twitter per hour. You’d finally be able to focus your valuable time on what works, making each hour bring back the highest possible dollar to your company. But don’t stop there! After finding which channel works comes the daunting task of finding which posts are working. This is where things get interesting.

Step 1. Setting up Google Analytics

Segmenting your traffic based on social channel is an absolute must. This step would normally take a long time and a lot of effort, but we’re in the business of making things simple for our readers. So here’s a link that will instantly segment your users by Google Analytic’s default social users.

And here’s another link that will separate users that aren’t part of GA default.

This is the first step to identifying social users within your analytics.

Step 2. Fine Tuning by Social Channel

So say you’d like to track Twitter traffic specifically in your analytics. There’s a rather simple way to approach this now that you’ve added the GA default social users from the link above.

First click ‘Add Segment’, find the ‘GA Default Social User’ segment and click ‘Actions’ then ‘Copy’.

Then rename the segment whatever you like. Hit the minus sign on each social source you’d like to exclude this time around. For example, only want to track Twitter? Hit minus on everything BUT Twitter.

Finally if you’d like some additional sources use the ‘Or’ operator to include them. This is recommended for tracking alternative links coming from the main channel you’re trying to segment.

Step 3. Custom Goal Conversions

Goals in Google are highly customizable but ultimately you’ll want to set them up to track conversions that affect your bottom line.

First create a new goal by going to the ‘View’ column and selecting ‘Goals.’

Then click ‘New Goal’ and select the custom goal you’d like to focus on. We recommend tracking multiple events such as newsletter signups, form completions and funnel objectives.

For example if you’d like to begin tracking users that spend a specific time on site create a Duration Goal by setting the hours, minutes and seconds fields to your specifications.

To keep things brief, here’s Google’s goal setup page so you can find the right goal for your needs.

Step 4. Finding and Tracking Your Social ROI

Translating all these numbers into something the C-Suite will understand and value is probably the hardest part of the process. And unfortunately Google doesn’t offer a quick fix for this step. But as I said before, we’re here to make things a lot simpler for you. We’ve developed an Ultimate Social Tracking Toolkit to streamline your segment tracking for years to come. Here’s how to get started instantly seeing your ROI with our toolkit.

First Select ‘Add Segment’ and choose GA Default Social Users

Then set the date to Jan 1 to Jan 31 or whichever month you’re adding at the moment. From there simply pull the data and add to the sheet in the orange boxes as seen below in our ‘Considerations’ tab of the toolkit.

GA Default User

Then in the ROI tab of the toolkit you’ll find multiple orange boxes where you’ll be able to enter your entire spend for each channel. This allows the dashboard to find your ROI instantaneously showing the exact ROI of each channel.

First add your spend for all Facebook Marketing
And BAM instant ROI across all channels

Finally repeat this process each month for instant revelations on your social ROI across all channels. This toolkit makes it ideal for reporting your ROI to your team as it auto-updates each time you add new monthly analytics.

Step 5. Tracking Goal Conversions From Social and Nonsocial Users

Our Ultimate Social Tracking Toolkit was designed to contrast social and non-social users to see where the most value is coming from in your pipeline. Part of this process is utilizing the new custom goals we set up in Step 3 by showing how social users are adding value to our goals compared to non-social users.

First simply pull the number of conversions from GA Default Social Users and Non-Social Users each month from Google Analytics and enter into the ‘Considerations’ tab of the toolkit.

Then sit back and relax as our dashboard instantly reveals how social users are converting on your specific goals compared to non-social users. You can’t get more targeted tracking than this!

Instant comparisons
And BAM! Instant comparisons
Simply add your conversion metrics...
Simply add your conversion metrics

Yesterday was the right time to start tracking your social ROI. Go over and grab a copy of our Social Tracking Toolkit as I can honestly say it’s the most complete toolkit I’ve ever seen for tracking and reporting on social media ROI. This is the type of toolkit your entire team will be using religiously and I fully believe you’ll see immediate results once you start tracking your ROI.

About the Author

Annika Bansal
Annika is a Senior Editor at Social Media Explorer. She travels full time and has lived on the road working remotely for over two years. You can check out her Instagram to follow her on the road.

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