If you’re managing lead generation and sales growth for your company, chances are you put a lot of effort into your paid advertising strategy. In 2021, social ads platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter grew exponentially. As the pandemic took away traditional methods of marketing like conferences and in-person networking events, many companies have shifted marketing budgets to include some hefty social media advertising.

Social media ads WORK- just ask to see our case studies and you’ll recognize the dramatic ROI to be gained from advertising on social media platforms. However, each platform and ad type is different, and they don’t all work for every use case. That’s why you need an expert team like ours here at Highforge.

If you’re asking for more budget for social ads in 2022, you’d better be prepared to report tangible, quantifiable results. Let’s explore seven ways to track the results of your social media ads in 2022 that will wow your boss and colleagues and earn you a spot at the strategic planning table.

  1. Set Campaign Goals

Before embarking on any marketing plan, define what you’re setting out to do. This could be obtaining new leads, increasing sales conversions, increasing page engagement or driving website visits.

Putting together a plan outlining your goals, objectives, tactics, timeline, budget, evaluation criteria and reporting will ensure stakeholders agree on desired outcomes. Define what success looks like so you know when you’ve achieved it or if you need to make adjustments along the way.

  1. Create a Metric Set

Once you agree on your goals, create your metric set. What are you going to measure to prove your success?

You’ll always want to monitor things like reach and impressions. However, neither of those things translate directly to revenue.

For some clients, things like referral traffic to the company website from social, follower growth and conversions, and reaction, comment and brand sentiment are useful metrics. But for most companies we work with, we want to see the dollar signs. Since the IOS 14 update, it’s much harder to measure sales from Facebook using Facebook Ads Manager, but there are workarounds. For some clients, Facebook’s Conversions API can solve these issues and allow greater visibility into purchases from ads, so we help clients optimize this tool whenever possible.

  1. Set up Tracking in Google Analytics

Using Google Analytics is a great way to see real-time referral tracking that shows how your social ads are driving traffic to your website. You can also see what actions people take after clicking on the ads, including sales and form completions. The key to making this work is to use UTM parameters on your Facebook ads. The destination URLs with UTM parameters can then be tracked as a referral source in Google Analytics. Even if you use other forms of tracking, you’ll still want to set up UTM parameters as a way to cross-check the results of your ads.

  1. Track Bounce and Conversion Rates

 You’ve managed to get clicks to your website from your social media ads, but what happens when users land on your site? A high bounce rate indicates your audience does not see value in the content on the landing page, and you’ll need to make some adjustments.

Similarly, your conversion rate indicates your landing page has yielded action on the user’s part. Define what a conversion looks like for your campaign. It could be downloading a white paper, entering an email, registering for a webinar, or making a purchase. If you’re sending a lot of traffic to a page without any conversions, the problem may be the landing page. And guess what, Highforge can help with that too! 

  1. Consider Alternate Ways to Track

Website clicks and sales aren’t the only ways to know if a social media campaign is working. Facebook Lead ads are one of our specialties here at Highforge, and our clients love when we use these ads to deliver them a constant stream of leads. If your business has a longer sales cycle, consider using lead ads to get newsletter subscribers, and then send them a drip and nurture email campaign to convert them into buyers. Make sure to tag the subscribers with the lead source so you’ll know where they came from when they do convert. Another way to obtain clear tracking is to run ads with phone calls as the objective. Use a unique phone number so you can get a read on how many calls came from the ads.

  1. Use Specific Discount Codes

 One easy way to track ad results for e-commerce is to use unique offers for each channel. For example, you can create a code called Facebook10 with a ten percent discount. E-commerce platforms like Woocommerce and Shopify make it easy to track coupon redemptions, giving you solid ROI information.

  1. Monitor and Report Results

Measurement of social media ad success doesn’t come at the end of the campaign. You should be monitoring the ads throughout the campaign timeline. This gives you the opportunity to adapt to what’s working best. If you see costs per lead or costs per click creeping up, it’s time to check things like audience size and frequency. You may also want to add in some new video or photography for your ads, along with fresh copy, to avoid creative fatigue.

Reporting your results should be a part of every social media ad campaign plan. Only then will marketers be able to showcase ROI and justify the budgets they need to remain competitive. Dive into the metrics to identify the elements of your campaign that were successful and those that weren’t.

By using these seven ways to track the results of social media ads in 2022, you’ll be able to demonstrate how to manage and optimize social ad campaigns to generate a stronger ROI. Happy campaign planning!