This is the third article in a three-part series focused on social media for event planners:
Part 1 | Part 2 |
Part 3

At this point, we have a social media strategy in place (covered in Part 1) and a plan for how to manage social media activities during the live event (covered in Part 2). Our third step is dedicated to measurement.

Measuring your social media effectiveness is an essential part of your overall social media marketing strategy. It is an important part of understanding the value of the investments made and for making future tactical decisions. It also shows you what specific content and tactics performed the best, so you can do more of what works well and eliminate the elements that are not.

Here are four things every event professional should know about social media measurement.

1. Goals and objectives

Your social media strategy plan should include a clear set of goals and objectives. This framework outlines the specific social and digital metrics you plan to track for each phase of the event and for each social media channel.

For example, one goal may be to sell tickets through social media, and the objective would be to sell a certain amount of tickets by a specific date. It is important to be specific and realistic as you identify goals and objectives.

2. Metrics and KPIs

Once you have identified your goals and objectives, outline your metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure your success. The difference between metrics and KPIs is subtle and can be confusing.

Metrics help you understand how well your program or content resonated with your audience or determine who you biggest champions are. KPIs measure progress toward your event goals. Most importantly, they lead to action. Essentially, KPIs impact the bottom-line of the event and must be tied back to your goals and objectives.

A few of the most popular metrics include:

  • Number of likes or followers
  • Link clicks
  • Conversations
  • Engagement (number of likes, comments, shares)
  • Number of followers
  • Hashtag use
  • Impressions

Example KPIs that directly determine the impact to the event’s bottom line:

  • Social media share rate
  • Click-through rate (CTR)
  • Sales per channel
  • Follower growth rate

3. CPA formula

One of the most telling indications of a successful social media marketing campaign is the number of tickets sold via social media — your cost per acquisition (CPA).

There are a number of ways to track this information and figure out where your website traffic originated, including UTM links. From there, apply the formulate below to determine your CPA.

CPA = (Total social media ad spend) / (Number of tickets purchased through social media)

4. Measurement and monitoring tools

One of the great things about social media is the countless number of tools available for measurement and monitoring. These monitoring tools provide the analytics you need to determine the overall sentiment about your event. Some are free tools, but there are also a lot of paid services out there as well.

  • Google Analytics
  • Facebook Insights
  • Twitter Analytics
  • LinkedIn Analytics
  • Kissmetrics
  • Hootsuite
  • Hashtracking
  • NUVI
  • Cyfe

We can all agree social media is here to stay. It can be a successful part of your event marketing efforts, resulting in increased revenue and brand awareness.

Therefore, the need to measure its impact is vital. The metrics and KPIs you measure may be different than mine, but every event professional should take the time to establish measurement and monitoring as part of the overall social media landscape.