Social media has forever changed how businesses and customers interact and talk about products and services. The ability to succeed in today’s global economy hinges on a business’s ability to analyze consumer behavior online and on social media platforms. Gathering the right metrics from social media platforms is not as straight forward as it may seem.

Vanity Metrics

Vanity metrics are those numbers that are often wrongly perceived as the crucial element of social media effectiveness. They include numbers such as page views, unique visitors, registered members, fan numbers and twitter followers. They are typically used to gauge performance partly because they are inherently available via networks like Facebook and Twitter, and partly because they represent a quick way to sound impressive and signal progress.

Are Vanity Metrics a Waste of Our Time?

Vanity metrics are nice on the surface, but definitely do not tell the whole story. For example, they do not tell you how many people bought your product due to that one tweet you sent out. That being said, we should not dismiss vanity metrics entirely. Instead we should use them as a mechanism to evaluate and elaborate further on online social behavior. It’s all about finding out what that list of followers is actually doing.

What is true engagement?

  • True engagement is more about conversation and conversion.
  • Customer retention: This is not the number of new followers. For example, if you are attracting a thousand new users a month and losing nine hundred the new followers will not be indicative of anything.
  • Driving a certain amount of dollars in relevant revenue. This refers to acquiring recurring sales in your core business.
  • Engaging new audience members or community. Determining whether your efforts in social media are prompting interaction either online or offline. Monitoring whether or not you are influencing attitudes and behaviors.
  • Improving customer satisfaction and changing customer perception. Counting how many beneficial conversations you are having with your target audience.


BlueHat Marketing has a talented and experienced social media team that can help you define your social media goals as precisely as possible and in meaningful business terms –not just “likes.” Once we have your desired outcomes at hand, we will move to identify and prioritize social engagement, content, reach and relevant metrics to support those outcomes.