The REAL Numbers you Should be Looking at on Social Media

smiirl-fliike-faceHere is a shocking statement about social media marketing: “The numbers don’t matter.” I am referring to the number of page likes or followers. There I said it, you can disagree if you want but that’s my statement and I’m sticking to it. With that out of the way. Let me explain why.

This conversation recently came about with a client of ours who are pitching a television show to several networks. Most of the networks asked the same question  “How many people are following you on social?” This is ironic coming from a medium that is in last place when it comes to catching up on how we consume things in 2014.

We are looking at the wrong metrics when it comes to social media marketing. It is a matter of quality over quantity. In this day and age of targeted marketing we want the most engagement out of each of our posts.

The fact of the matter is your organic reach on a Facebook post  is less then 10 percent of your page likes. So if you have 600 page likes your organic reach is going to be below 60 people, many of whom will pay no attention to it. The only way to pump up organic reach is to have interaction with your post and the only way to get interaction is to have great content. So it all comes back to putting out quality.

There are plenty of nay sayer out there that dismiss social media accounts that have a low number of page likes or follower, the television industry seem to be one. This is the wrong way to think about it.

A person or brand with 100 followers can easily have the same reach on social that another account with 10,000 followers has. You see time and time again an account with a large number followers but no interaction with any of their post. You easily see the person with just a few followers getting numerous interactions on a good, relevant, quality post.

We somehow have applied old school thinking to social media marketing when it is a new school way of doing things. It does not scale the way most of us want it to. It is a one to one marketing platform. You get the best use out of it  by engaging with people on a one to one level. All to often you see brands and companies just pushing stuff out there in a “look at me” fashion. They treat social media like a traditional print ad. It is a pull media where you want to engage with the people, give them useful content, not just shove something into their face.

Needless to say our client needed to increase their numbers to get attention from the networks. They decided they were going to do it the right way and started to increase the quality of their posts and use target marketing to get real likes. It turned out great for them. The numbers went up, but more importantly so did the engagement with people. So until the bigger networks lose the old mindset of inflated numbers, there is a proper way to grow your likes while keeping the interaction up as well. This should be your goal.

So the next time you go asking people to like your page, ask yourself first, are you really going to enage with them and give them content they can use or are they just part of an empty number.