Social media goals are the key objectives you want to achieve through your social media strategy. Ideally, they should complement your overall business goals. If your business wants to reach a wider audience, a social media goal could be to gain 1,000 new followers across all platforms within a certain number of months. If your business is looking to increase annual revenue, a social media goal could be to increase traffic to your e-commerce website.
Whatever your ultimate business goals are, it’s crucial to set corresponding social media goals to help shape strategy and achieve success.
Why Are Social Media Goals Important?
Without a goal to strive toward, your social media efforts will likely feel aimless and lead to frustrating results. Clear, defined goals, however:
- Shape social media strategy
- Optimize budgets for social ads
- Improve marketing ROI
- Clarify tasks
- Achieve broader company goals
Goal vs. Strategy
It’s important to note that social media goals are not the same as your social media strategy. While goals are the “what” (i.e., what the results of the campaign should be), the strategy is the “how” (i.e., how the campaign should progress to reach your goals). The best way to guide yourself to a winning strategy is to set meaningful social media goals first. Your goals on social media should drive your decisions within the campaign.
How to Set Social Media Goals
Now that you understand the importance of establishing social media goals, here are some goal-setting methods to consider:
Start with the Bigger Picture
Every business has short-term and long-term goals that the company is working toward. By looking at the bigger company picture and analyzing your large-scale objectives, you can more easily shape your social media goals.
A 10-year-old HVAC company has a goal to expand to a new service location within the year. Because the overall company goal is to expand company reach, its social media goals could include:
- Increasing branding awareness in the new service location
- Gaining new followers within the new location
- Generate leads from users within the new location
- Attracting potential hires to handle the increased workload
A 20-year-old restaurant would like to rebrand to improve its presence and reputation in the community. Because the overall goal is to change the restaurant’s dated image, its social media goals could include:
- Increasing (re)brand awareness
- Strengthening community engagement on posts
- Improving customer feedback through reviews, surveys, etc.
A brand-new record store with a robust e-commerce site would like to get the word out about its products and establish its name among prospective customers. Because the overall goal is to inform the local and online community of the store’s products, the social media goals could include:
- Increasing brand awareness
- Boosting website traffic
- Driving conversions
Make SMART Decisions
When it’s time to put pen to paper and define your social media goals, make sure they are SMART. SMART is an acronym that stands for:
S – Specific
Clearly state what you want to achieve with your social media goals. Even if you have to brainstorm generally before narrowing in on the specific goal, make sure it is specific.
Example: if you want to increase traffic to your website, and your main focus is targeting Instagram users, your goal should instead be “to increase website traffic from Instagram.”
M – Measurable
Make your goals measurable so that you can track your progression. In the end, you’ll know without question if you have reached your goal or not.
Example: If you want to increase your follower count on Facebook, simply double your current like count. Now the goal is measurable.
A – Attainable
You want your social media goals to be a bit of a challenge while still within reason. Otherwise, you will likely approach your strategy with defeat, which could negatively affect your outlook toward future goals.
Example: If you have 5,000 likes on Facebook, perhaps doubling the follower count by the time your campaign is over is unattainable. However, increasing the count by 500 is reasonably challenging and attainable.
R – Relevant
Is your social media goal in line with bigger-picture objectives? If not, reshape it to fit your business’s overall goals.
Example: Your company is looking to gain business in a new service area. If your social media goal is focused only on current customers in your existing service location, you may want to redirect your goals to align with the company’s goals. Instead of focusing on current customers, plan to target prospective customers in the new service location.
T – Timed
Timed means that you should have a set deadline for reaching your goal. Without an end date, it’s easier to let your goals slide, and it becomes harder to complete them.
Example: We’re returning to the first SMART scenario, where the goal is to increase traffic to the website from Instagram. If you set an attainable percentage to reach within 6 months, you will have created a SMART goal!
Identify and Track Your Metrics with KPIs
You have zeroed in on your SMART goals for social media. To ensure they are the right goals to pursue, identify the relevant KPIs (key performance indicators) associated with each goal and track the metrics.
There are several goal categories that KPIs can fall under, including:
User reach shows where your social media presence goes and how far your message spreads. If you want to track your social reach, analyze:
- Follower counts
- Page impressions
- Post impressions
- Post reach
- Web referral traffic
User engagement shows how audiences interact with your social channels. To track your metrics for engagement KPIs, analyze:
- Page mentions
- Page shares
- Post comments
- Post reactions
- Post shares
Social media platforms are now the go-to place to learn about others’ experiences with a company. Along with ratings and reviews, you can gauge public opinion of your company by analyzing:
- Page mentions
- Resolved vs. unresolved issues
- Customer lifetime value
While audience engagement on social media is great, you really want to convert the audience member into a customer. You can track this by analyzing:
- Click-through rates
- Lead conversion rates
- Non-revenue conversions
- Sales revenue conversions
Ready to Set Some Successful Social Media Goals? M&R is Here to Help!
If you’d like to optimize your social media presence with strategic, well-crafted social media goals, talk to the digital experts at M&R Marketing. Our strategists understand the importance of goal creation and can optimize your efforts to achieve big results. From setting up new profiles across all platforms to posting fresh content, analyzing data, and adjusting strategies to enhance performance, we take care of it all for you.