Published on

November 24, 2023

Analytics
eBook

12 Essential KPIs for Social Media Managers in 2024

KPIs for social media managers made easy. Find out the ones to track, how to report KPIs to your team, and how to align marketing goals.
Natasha Badger
Marketing Associate
Analytics

Social media marketing has become an essential part of any business's overall marketing strategy. With over 4.9 billion social media users worldwide and users spending an average of 2 hours and 24 minutes per day on social media platforms, having a presence on social media is crucial for reaching and engaging with your target audience.

However, simply having social media accounts is not enough. To prove the success of your social media efforts and optimize your strategy, you need to track key performance indicators (KPIs). The right social media KPIs demonstrate how your social media page and campaigns are performing, where improvements can be made, and how social media is contributing to key business goals like driving website traffic, boosting brand awareness, increasing sales, and improving customer satisfaction.

In this article, we’ll explore the most important social media KPIs that social media marketing managers should be tracking in 2024, so you can start measuring the impact of your social media marketing efforts and take data-driven action to maximize results.

Key Takeaways:

  • Reach KPIs like followers, impressions, and overall reach demonstrate your social media audience's size and growth potential.
  • Engagement KPIs such as likes, comments, shares, and click-through rates measure how well your audience interacts with your content.
  • Conversion KPIs like lead generation and sales metrics signal how your efforts directly impact business growth.
  • Customer satisfaction KPIs provide direct feedback on how your audience perceives your brand.
  • Leveraging AI tools can significantly help marketers in the fast-paced world of social media, where making data-driven decisions is key to success.

Why Track Social Media KPIs?

As social media managers juggle different platforms with tight schedules and limited resources, it's important to zero in on the key metrics that have the most impact. Tracking the right KPIs:

  • Demonstrates campaign impact: Proves to stakeholders that your social media efforts are paying off in tangible ways aligned with business goals.
  • Allows for optimization: Identifies what content types and platforms resonate best with your audience so you can refine your strategy.
  • Informs budget decisions: Helps determine ideal social ad spend and which platforms offer the highest ROI.
  • Drives strategy: Provides insights that shape both your ongoing social media campaigns and overarching multi-channel marketing plans.

In short, social media analytics and KPIs transform campaign data into actionable insights that lead to better marketing results over time.

Logos of the most common social media platforms

How to Choose Social Media KPIs

With so much data available, the key is identifying the right KPIs for social media managers to pay attention to depending on the social media platform. Here are some best practices as you determine the KPIs that should be part of your social media marketing strategy:

  • Tie KPIs to business objectives: Ensure each metric relates directly to a core goal like boosting brand awareness, increasing sales, or improving customer loyalty.
  • Look beyond vanity metrics: While metrics like followers and likes demonstrate reach and engagement, conversion and customer satisfaction KPIs show real business impact.
  • Track metrics consistently: Establish a cadence for monitoring KPIs week-over-week and month-over-month to identify trends and optimize efforts.
  • Compare to historical benchmarks: Put your performance into context by measuring against your own past results and competitor analysis.
  • Revisit and refresh KPIs: As goals shift, ensure metrics align with updated objectives.

Now let’s explore some of the most important categories of social media KPIs to track.

Reach KPIs

Reach metrics indicate the size of your social media audience and the potential for content to be seen by more users. These KPIs help quantify brand awareness and set expectations for possible engagement and conversions.

Followers

The number of social media followers measures the current size of your branded social media community on networks like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, and TikTok. While raw follower numbers demonstrate reach, it’s important to track both:

  • Total followers: Indicates overall audience size and brand awareness.
  • Follower growth rate: Shows whether efforts lead to an expanding community over time.

Setting goals around your follower count and acquisition and tracking growth week-over-week and month-over-month provides key context into the health of your community. Across all social media metrics, this is likely the most commonly tracked.

Reporting on social media followers with Akkio's Chat Explore

Impressions

Impressions quantify the number of times any content associated with your account is displayed to users. This includes:

  • Post impressions: The reach of individual social posts.
  • Page/account impressions: The total number of times any of your content was seen by users.

Monitoring impressions demonstrates your brand’s overall reach and can help identify types of content that resonate best with your audience.

Reach

Whereas impressions track potential reach, metrics labeled simply “reach” measure the number of unique accounts that actually saw your content over a given period of time. Key reach KPIs are:

  • Post reach: The number of unique users who saw an individual piece of content.
  • Account/page reach: The total number of unique users who viewed any of your content during a reporting period.

Assessing reach identifies saturation amongst your existing audience and the potential to extend beyond your current follower base.

Engagement KPIs

While reach metrics show the size of your potential audience in terms of social media users, engagement metrics and KPIs measure actual interaction with your content. Monitoring these demonstrates audience sentiment and helps identify the types of content and messaging that resonate best with followers.

Likes

Likes show endorsement and provide baseline engagement data. Track:

  • Post likes: The number of likes on individual pieces of content.
  • Account like rate: The percentage of followers who have liked your page overall.

Likes should not be analyzed in isolation. Compare them to impressions and reach to calculate the engagement rate for fuller context.

A scatterplot of likes vs comments, generated with AI

Comments

Comments indicate users felt compelled to share reactions, responses, and additional remarks. Useful comment KPIs include:

  • Comment volume: The number of comments received overall or on specific posts.
  • Comment sentiment: The tone and themes within remarks based on qualitative social listening. Sentiment analysis is a powerful method of using AI to measure reactions from social media toward your brand. 
Sentiment Analysis in Akkio for social media comments

Shares

When users repost content to their personal profiles, it extends reach to new audiences and demonstrates content is valuable enough to actively recommend. Key metrics around social sharing are:

  • Reshare volume: The number of shares overall or by post.
  • Content amplification rate: The percentage of followers who actively reshare your content.
Find out what's the best time to post on social media

Mentions

Mentions occur when other users reference your branded hashtag, handle, page, or content directly. Track:

  • Mention volume: The number of brand references overall or within specific campaigns.
  • Share of voice: Your portion of voice compared to competitors within your industry.

Click-Through Rate

Click-through rate (CTR) measures those who clicked links within your content, indicating interest and intent to take action. Monitor:

  • Link CTR by post: Identify content that drives the highest rate of clicks.
  • Traffic driven: Total users who clicked links back to your owned channels.

High click-through and low bounce rates signal content and landing pages align with audience expectations and needs.

Conversion KPIs

While reach and engagement provide useful context, conversion metrics directly demonstrate how social media impacts business growth. Monitor these KPIs to quantify ROI and optimize efforts to drive more tangible value.

Lead Generation

Active lead generation calls-to-action provide a way to capture interested followers and nurture them into happy customers. Track conversions like:

  • Contact form submissions
  • Newsletter signups
  • Gated content downloads

Set goals around overall conversion volume and conversion rate to identify the most effective offers.

Sales

Where possible, actively monitor and attribute revenue generated through social channels. This might include:

  • Online sales: Track traffic to product pages and quantify orders.
  • In-store sales: Correlate web visits and impressions to in-person purchases.
  • Ad cost per acquisition: For paid social ads, monitor the cost to generate a conversion.

Identifying income directly tied to social demonstrates tangible financial impact to justify budgets.

Customer Satisfaction KPIs

Customer feedback provides qualitative data to complement quantitative analytics. They're essential to ensure your social media marketing strategies align with your actual users. Actively listen and track customer satisfaction score metrics like:

Net Promoter Score (NPS)

NPS measures audience likelihood to recommend your brand on a scale from 1-10. Scores above 50 are considered “good.” High NPS indicates loyal brand advocates.

Reviews

Ratings and reviews shared across social platforms to provide transparent feedback. Monitor:

  • Average star rating: Overall brand sentiment based on five-star scale.
  • Review volume: The quantity of ratings and remarks left by users.
  • Review sentiment: Analyze themes and highlights within written feedback.

Responding to reviews and critiques openly further humanizes your brand.

Additional Metrics to Consider

While this guide focused on 12 of the most universal and impactful measurements, your unique business goals may also make other niche social media KPIs relevant.

Some additional metrics that provide more granular insights include:

  • Demographic data on followers
  • Content type performance
  • Hashtag and @mention volume
  • Audience growth by geo-location
  • Account blocking and muting
  • Social advertising KPIs like cost per click (CPC) and cost per impression (CPM)
  • Customer lifetime value
  • Customer service metrics like response times and resolution rates

Choose supplemental metrics wisely by ensuring each provides actionable insights tied to optimization. Avoid “vanity metrics” that look impressive but offer little tangible value.

Tools for Tracking Social Media KPIs

Monitoring a variety of metrics across multiple platforms takes tools more advanced than each network’s native analytics.

Social media management platforms like Hootsuite, Keyhole, and Sprout Social allow you to:

  • Connect multiple social profiles to track cross-channel KPIs
  • Track social media marketing campaigns and audience growth rate
  • Create social media posts easily and schedule them across social media channels
  • Launch social media ads from a unified dashboard
  • Build customized reports to align with your objectives
  • Monitor dashboards for at-a-glance insights
  • Set up alerts when goals are achieved or thresholds are neared
  • Compare performance against competitors
  • Integrate with other data sources like website analytics for bigger-picture content 

These tools can be especially useful for agencies working with many accounts across multiple platforms and need to track and report on metrics frequently. 

Tips for Analyzing and Acting on Social Media KPIs

While identifying and collecting relevant social media data is the first step, metrics must fuel strategic decisions and content optimizations to drive better results over time.

Analyze Trends and Set Goals

Review historical information to set relevant goals for future growth. Analyze both cumulative and post-by-post metrics to identify trends and outliers in performance. Look at highest and lowest engagement rates by day, time, and platform to inform content planning and ideal posting cadence.

For deep analysis and to predict key outcomes from your social media data, AI-powered analysis platforms like Akkio can help. You don’t need to be an expert in data analysis to extract key insights that could transform your social media strategy. 

Easily discover social media trends in your data with text analysis

Share Key Insights

Compile reports on crucial campaign recaps and wins to share with stakeholders, focusing on the story that the data tells. This builds confidence in your expertise and the impact of social media marketing overall.

Generate dashboards to keep track of core KPIs 24/7

Identify Optimization Opportunities

Let data guide decisions around budget allocation, platform focus, and program adjustments. Lean into what’s working well while eliminating ineffective initiatives or outdated content approaches.

Revisit KPIs

Schedule time to reassess if current metrics still provide relevant insights as strategies evolve. Consider adding emerging platforms and listening channels.

Leveraging AI and Machine Learning for Social Media KPIs

Beyond analysis of historical data, AI-powered analysis and machine learning can transform how social media managers approach their KPIs. These technologies enable a more efficient, accurate, and nuanced understanding of social media data, leading to enhanced productivity and more strategic decision-making.

AI-Driven Insights for Enhanced KPI Tracking

Predictive Analytics: AI tools can analyze past social media performance data to forecast future trends. This predictive capacity helps in setting realistic and informed KPI targets, such as follower growth, engagement rates, and conversion metrics.

Sentiment Analysis: Machine learning algorithms can sift through comments and mentions to gauge public sentiment towards your brand. This insight is particularly useful for customer satisfaction KPIs, as it provides a nuanced understanding of how your audience perceives your brand and content.

Audience Segmentation: AI algorithms can segment your audience based on behavior, preferences, and interactions. This targeted approach allows for more personalized content strategies, impacting KPIs related to customer engagement and conversion rates.

Automated Content Optimization: AI can identify patterns in high-performing content and suggest content strategies that are more likely to resonate with your audience. This helps in optimizing engagement KPIs like likes, comments, shares, and click-through rates.

Efficient Reporting: AI-driven tools can automate the collection and reporting of social media KPI data across various platforms. This saves time and provides a comprehensive view of your social media performance, allowing for more informed strategy adjustments.

Machine Learning for Proactive Strategy Adjustments

Real-Time Analytics: Machine learning tools can provide real-time insights into your social media campaigns, enabling swift adjustments to optimize KPIs like reach, engagement, and conversions.

Content Trend Prediction: By analyzing current and emerging trends, machine learning helps predict which types of content are likely to gain popularity. This foresight can be crucial for staying ahead of the curve and maintaining a competitive edge in engagement KPIs.

Customer Behavior Analysis: Understanding the online behaviors of your target audience can be enhanced with machine learning, offering detailed insights into the best times to post, the types of content that drive engagement, and the messaging that leads to conversions.

Incorporating AI and machine learning into social media strategies offers a significant advantage in achieving and surpassing KPIs. These technologies not only streamline the process of data analysis and reporting but also provide deeper, more actionable insights. By embracing these advancements, social media managers can enhance their productivity, make more data-driven decisions, and stay ahead in the ever-evolving landscape of social media marketing.

Conclusion

The right social media KPIs provide tangible proof of campaign impact and opportunities for optimization, and companies need to look beyond vanity metrics to conversion and customer satisfaction data for insights on business growth.

In today’s digital landscape, data-informed social media marketing is crucial for success, which can be enhanced by AI tools. Identify and track KPIs aligned to overarching business objectives for social media success and maximum impact. With the right metrics guiding decisions, your social media efforts will demonstrate clear ROI and resonate with your ever-growing audience.

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