There is no doubt that social media is one of the most important communication platforms today. So much of the world connects with friends and family and stays up to date on pop culture, news, and the latest trends.

More than half of the people on this planet use social media. More people communicate through social networks than any other online channel. And social media inspires more shopping than any other channel.

Even so, many organizations still have difficulty doing social work. Social reach is decreasing and click-through rates for social advertising have decreased. And many companies still underestimate the value of their social followers.

For companies that successfully use social media to better get in touch with followers, social measurement is more than just an instrument to prove the effectiveness of the sender. In the right hands, good social measurement offers the best solution to get the most out of social channels.

Download the full report on social trends To get an in-depth analysis of the data, you need to inform your social strategy in 2021.

Concerned about organic reach? Measurement is the answer.

Your marketing cannot be successful if no one sees your messages. But your social posts are likely to only reach around 5% of your followers. For this reason, both social marketers and executives cite declining organic social reach as their greatest concern for the future of social media.

The only way to solve this problem is with good social measurement. When people interact with your content, that content can eventually reach more people. While industry best practices provide basic guidance – for example, always include photos or videos in your posts – people on different social platforms want to interact with different types of content from different brands.

The British Museum created its first social accounts on Twitter and Facebook in 2009, and later added accounts on Instagram and YouTube. The museum’s early social media efforts focused on broadcasting identical content across multiple channels. Using the social media measurement, the team identified opportunities to develop channel-specific content that make the most of each social media channel.

After analyzing how different content formats work on different social media platforms, the museum took a differentiated approach. For example, the museum is now using Facebook Live to bring its collections to people in more than 75 countries around the world. In cooperation with Oculus VR, a pilot project was also carried out to create the first interactive 360-degree virtual reality experience directly in the Facebook news feed.

Since adopting this measurement-based approach, the museum has increased its follower numbers by 141% on Twitter, 123% on Instagram and 20% on Facebook.

While your intuition and experience can get you started, measuring it is the real key to improving social reach and engagement. Once you’ve selected the assets that you think will engage your audience, test your ideas to see which posts are generating the most engagement, approvals, and impressions by platform. Then continue testing, learning and optimizing.

Remember: Even a few extra percentage points of reach can vastly improve your social performance.

Do you want to turn social ads into a performance channel? Measurement can do that.

Companies are more focused than ever on using social media to get measurable results. In fact, two of the top three social marketers’ goals are now performance-related. Because of this, U.S. marketers will be spending more than $ 40 billion on social advertising this year.

Just one problem, as social ad spend goes up, social ad performance goes down. In fact, social ad click-through rates fell by 30% over the past year. If you want your social ads to work as well as your other digital channels, you need to optimize your spend.

As consumer demand shifted during the pandemic, the luxury skin care, cosmetics, and perfume company, Clarins shifted its marketing budget accordingly, cutting makeup spending due to lack of demand and focusing on skin care. With new content already successfully driving engagement, the marketing team focused on finding ways to drive traffic to the Clarins website and generate additional ecommerce sales.

Based on the trending conversations on search and social channels, the team developed a social advertising strategy that highlights offers for existing skin care offerings that would appeal to customers with financial difficulties. The strategy was a complete success. Social ads quickly became a top media investment for the Clarins brand.

By the end of the quarter, social ads were driving 30,000 website visits, with the cost per click and click-through rate well above the 0.2% benchmark. For example, a single lip oil ad had a 0.7% click-through rate – and a 42% increase in sales performance over the previous week that was solely due to social ads.

Shortly after the Clarins & Me advisory service started, the team found that the service was well received by customers. The average consultation order volume was much higher than that of customers browsing and shopping on the Clarins website. By quickly allocating ad spend on the consultations and investing in people who discover the service, Clarins was able to further increase the effectiveness of the campaign and achieve a 0.6% click-through rate with a low CPC compared to other media campaigns.

The personal advisory campaign of the beauty brand Clarins & Clarins & Me was a great success

A good measurement doesn’t just tell you whether or not your ads are performing. You can use this tool to improve this performance.

And yes, good measurement can also prove the value of the social.

You might think that social media just can’t be measured. After all, social programs serve many different audiences throughout the customer lifecycle. This complexity explains why nearly six in ten social managers struggle to report a return on investment (ROI) and less than a third of CMOs fail to demonstrate the value of social media.

That does not have to be that way. Search, email, and TV marketing are complex too, yet your colleagues in those departments have learned to document the value they create.

The key to a successful social measurement? Keep your metrics simple. Sure, social platforms are full of new and socially specific Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). However, your boss already knows and trusts cross-platform metrics such as return on ad spend and lifetime value – and these measures are also directly related to your company’s business goals. This is one of the reasons our customers tell us that they will get better results if they measure social media using the same models as other marketing channels.

With the right tools, you can assign classic conversion data on site, such as filling out lead forms and purchase confirmations, to various social platforms, accounts or even specific posts. This is a great way to compare the bottom line performance of social marketing with the results you’re getting from search, email, and other digital channels.

We will always face new challenges on social media. Remember, a good social measurement is more than a tool for tracking your progress – it’s the tool that makes your progress possible.

Do you want to keep your social media momentum going in 2021? We surveyed 11,189 marketers to determine the most effective ways to increase traffic, get leads, and attract new customers in 2021. Our Social Trends 2021 report will give you all the insights you need to be successful.

Read the report

This post was originally published on the Adobe blog.