Social media agencies have been struggling since ever to measure the return on investment for their clients just as much as any social media manager is trying to justify his cool activities and big spending on social networks. Some don’t even believe in ROI of social media.
I believe whether you are an account director at the agency side or you’re at the client’s side, you need to work on these 4 points to help achieve your desired ROI:
– Social media partners
Working as an account director managing telecom accounts for almost 4 years now, I am confident to say that companies do not need a social media agency.
What they need is a partner.
I spent two years working closely with one of our telecom clients from their offices. I shared their desks, kitchen, business objectives, their activities, and grew with them.
We started with being called the social media agency but for the past year we’re being called partners. This unique relationship we accomplished was crucial to score wins and achieve different milestones locally and regionally. An agency will get you reports but a partner will get you ROI.
If you’re the social media person working at a company that doesn’t have an agency, you still need social media partners and these can be your online resources and tools, in addition to your colleagues in different departments. You need to establish a social business by involving everyone.
– ROI focused strategy
You need to plan your business objectives at the beginning of every year and draw steps on how you are going to achieve them quarter by quarter. Every quarter needs to be reviewed at the beginning of the month and adjusted according to business needs and social media trends. These two need to be combined in order to achieve measureable, useful and cool results.
Your ROI needs to be defined in advance and be very clear on what you’re getting out of these activities, may it be brand awareness, dollar value of fans and followers, or overheads savings like call center employees, etc.
This strategy will draw the way and play as a treasure map.
– Collaboration with other teams
What I learned is that one department will do the job but collaboration and integration can do wonders. For telecom companies, for example, you need to link the fans and followers with their usage habits and billing cycles. This means that the marketing communication department needs to work closely with the billing and research departments. This also requires building relationships among different departments and this is the responsibility of the account director at the agency partner side or the social media manager at the brand side.
– Celebrate your successes
Celebrating is essential to give the extra push to the next quarter. While celebrating you need to review how to contribute in better case studies and reports. It’s very important to reflect back on what you have achieved in order to do better.
Social networks are not sales machines and you should not always expect a high return on investment, but any business activity should eventually have return on investment. Otherwise why would any business owner spend their money? Yes I’m a big supporter of brand awareness and customer experience but I also believe that it’s very important to track the dollar value. How to track is a different story and what is the ROI you’re looking for is also another argument.