For most social marketers, metrics like impressions, engagements, conversions, and clicks hardly need to be explained. These are the numbers you are likely already following on a regular basis to measure your social performance and identify areas for improvement.
While these metrics can make perfect sense to you and your team, things like the number and reach of followers are as good as gibberish for a non-social executive. Worse, if a leader cannot immediately see the impact social media has on business goals, it becomes even more difficult for them to see the value of social media in the first place. As a result, it is difficult for social teams to ask about the executive buy-in and investments they need to take their social strategies to the next level.
Here you can use social media reports to close gaps in knowledge at the executive level and translate the raw data into a narrative that will resonate with all executives. With a summary of your social media report, you can convince even the most skeptical executives of the impact social media can have on your business.
Do you want to dive into your social media coverage? Get your toolkit for free here!
A summary of your social media report will give you the buy-in you need
One of the reasons executives remove social data is because it’s not always clear how this affects their respective disciplines. And if leadership can’t immediately correlate how social influences affect different parts of the company, they are less likely to throw their support behind the efforts of the social team.
This is worrying given that, according to the Sprout Social IndexTM, 41% of social marketers say they need buy-in from their leadership teams in order to make greater business impact with their strategies. With reports as simple as monthly social media reports, marketers can build trust in their executive team and clearly communicate why executives need to invest in social media.
I’ve always believed that one of the most important roles of a social media lead is training internal stakeholders to gain that trust and get involved. You were spot on.
– Jen Hartmann (@jenalyson) October 15, 2020
The ability to communicate your social results can also help you secure executive buy-in when the time comes to ask for additional budgets and resources. For example, let’s say you want to increase your budget for a paid social campaign. You have a much better chance of winning your finance manager over if you can show him the performance of your social campaigns and measure your return on investment.
Don’t underestimate the ability to personalize your reports
To ensure that your social report has the most impact on your executive team, it’s important to tailor the content and language used to suit your audience. For example, your sales rep might not be interested in an engagement metrics report, but you can get their attention by sharing conversion data and other insights that directly impact new business.
Do you customize social reports to suit the stakeholders who ask about them?
– Sprout Social (@SproutSocial) September 8, 2020
Put yourself in the shoes of your reader as you start creating your report. What social metrics and insights are most important to a marketing or product executive? When you send a report to an executive on the product team, will this message volume and sentiment data be essential to their team’s strategies? The more you can tailor your report to your stakeholders’ preferences and provide insights into their goals, the more valuable it becomes.
Here’s what I learned about social media coverage:
• Make it easier to open
Use a format that your audience prefers. If the report is intended for a specific person, find out how that person likes to consume information – spreadsheets, graphs, face-to-face meetings – and use this method.
– Jenny Li Fowler, Lee Kyung-sil (@TheJennyLi) June 23, 2020
Brevity is also crucial when creating your social media report for the summary. Don’t try to include every detail in your report. Your leadership team looks for key highlights and insights specific to their goals, but doesn’t have the time to read a multi-page report. Be concise – your summary should make it easy for any leader to quickly grasp and understand the impact of your social endeavors.
Consistency is key to an effective social media report summary
So you’ve done your data analysis and put the key takeaways in a report to share with your executive team – great! Now is the time to make reporting and data sharing a regular habit.
Consistent communication of your social results with the leadership team will keep stakeholders informed about everything you do and build trust between leadership and the social environment. These updates can be as simple as a weekly Slack message with real-time insights, or as detailed as a monthly report. Communicating your social results on a regular basis removes ambiguities in your social strategy and ensures that managers are always informed of relevant efforts.
If the idea of consistent reporting sounds daunting, or you’re unsure how to create a monthly social media report, you’ve come to the right place. In our latest Social Media Reporting Toolkit, we’ve put together the tools and templates you need to build your own reporting system. Are you ready to send your results to your leadership team in a way that offers the greatest impact? Download the toolkit to start your social media reports today.