3 Ways To Use the Value of a Like or Follow

Dan Zarella and Hubspot gave the “what is your social media audience worth” pot a good stir last week.

It doesn’t matter if you like Hubspot’s formula or not (at least not for this article). One day many businesses will put a value on their social media audience, if it is in the form of monthly impact to their business or the average value of an audience member.

Then what? How do you use the value of a like, follower, circler, or similar to improve the value of your marketing and your business?

A good valuation methodology lets you look beyond the results of a current campaign and get a better view into the long term impact it will have on your business.

Here are three examples of how marketers will be able to use this information to improve their social media marketing programs.

1. Segment Your Followers

The value of a Like or Follower is an average metric, you need to identify the higher value individuals or groups so you can focus on that audience or test ways to increase the value of other segments.

Social media segmentation isn’t trivial, however you can determine the general firmagraphic or demographic profile of your social media audience using a number of different tools (or by manually researching a sample) and compare that to the audience that is driving value. The comparison will let you identify segments that represent a disproportionate share of value.

2. Engage Differently

How will mixing up the content you share or focusing more on creating discussion impact your marketing? Test it, but instead of measuring the change in clicks or number of discussions, focus on the impact it has on the value of your audience.

3. Grow Your Audience

With a value in hand, test different recruitment methods and see how they impact the value of your audience. By using a value metric rather than measuring growth directly, you will begin to measure the impact your marketing has on your audience and you will be able to identify tactics that deliver a higher value audience.

Warning: Do Not Use Value To Buy Likes

Whatever you do with it, do not use it as an allowable spend to begin buying Likes or Followers. When you change your acquisition tactics, you change the type of audience you get and the reason they liked or followed, etc you. Because you are now getting different people for different reasons, the value will be different, and likely lower.

This is one reason companies should practice Organic Social Media

Your Turn

If you could accurately value your social media audience, how would you use that value to improve your social media marketing? Share your view in the comments below or with me on Twitter (@wittlake).

Image by Lily15 (Hungarian Wikipedia) CC-BY-SA-3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

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About Eric Wittlake

I am a digital and B2B marketer with a background in online media and analytics. I work with B2B clients on media and integrated marketing programs at Babcock & Jenkins. You can connect with me on Twitter at @wittlake or in the comments here on my B2B Digital Marketing blog.