Customer service metrics enable companies to track their support efforts in an on-demand, multi-platform world. Plus, keeping tabs on your customer service metrics is an important way to measure the overall health of your brand. Happy customers make repeat purchases, reduce the load on your customer service team, and increase the reach of your brand through positive word of mouth.
Keep reading to find out how to efficiently track customer success and satisfaction, and help your team stay on top of all things customer service.
Bonus: Get a free, easy-to-use Customer Service Report Template that helps you track and calculate your monthly customer service efforts all in one place.
What are customer service metrics?
Customer service metrics are a set of key performance indicators used to measure the performance, quality, and efficiency of a business’s customer support efforts.
Tracking common metrics for customer service allows a business to allocate necessary resources, understand which channels customers use, and identify recurring issues or bottlenecks in the support process.
Customer service metrics are also used to measure client satisfaction. This includes direct feedback from customer surveys or polls, and also reports that calculate how long it takes for tickets to be resolved.
18 customer service metrics to track in 2023
Here’s a breakdown of the top customer service metrics that matter.
1. Net promoter score (NPS)
Your Net Promoter Score measures how likely your customers are to recommend your company to others. It’s one of the most important customer engagement success metrics. Only those customers who are on good terms with your brand are likely to recommend you to others.
To measure NPS, send a short survey to customers after a purchase or customer service interaction. Ask them one simple question: How likely are you to recommend the brand? NPS is usually measured on a scale of 1-10, but some use a five-point scale instead.
Source: Shaw Mobile text survey
To measure NPS, subtract your percentage of detractors (those who would not recommend your brand) from your promoters (those who would). Leave out those who fall in “maybe” territory—these people are considered “passives” and don’t impact your score.
NPS = Percentage of promoters – Percentage of detractors
2. Customer satisfaction score (CSAT)
Like NPS, CSAT involves asking your customers a simple survey question. However, in this case, you just ask them to rate their experience.
So, instead of asking whether they’d recommend you, you’re just asking how satisfied they are with you. This is one of the most valuable customer service success metrics. It encapsulates the entire customer service experience in one response.
You can send an NPS survey either after a purchase OR after a customer service interaction. For CSAT, it’s most common to send the survey after a customer service interaction only. You can use a numeric scale, or get creative, like Booking.com did in this CSAT survey:
Source: Booking.com email survey
To calculate CSAT, divide the number of positive scores on your survey by the total number of replies. Multiply by 100 to get the percentage.
CSAT = (Number of positive scores/Number of replies) x 100
3. Customer effort score (CES)
This is another metric determined by a simple survey. At first, the survey question looks very similar to that for CSAT. But in this case, rather than asking how satisfied the customer is with the service, you instead ask how easy it was to get the service they needed.
Source: TurboTax email survey
This gives you a good sense of how well your customer service program is set up. Where CSAT measures the success of a specific interaction, CES measures the ease of accessing support in the first place.
Hint: Offering customers support on all the channels where they expect it is a key way to improve CES. Hootsuite Inbox is a great tool to manage customer support across all social channels, keeping customers happy and boosting your CES.
The formula for calculating CES is the same as for CSAT—it’s just that the survey question addresses a different aspect of customer success. So to calculate CES, divide the number of positive scores on your CES survey by the total number of replies. Multiply by 100 to get the percentage.
CES = (Number of positive scores/Number of replies) x 100
4. Support ticket categories
For companies that organize their support tickets by type of issue, it’s important to keep tabs on which problems arise most often. If your CES is high, analyzing which categories receive the most volume can help you identify where customers exert the most effort.
Support ticket categories may include:
- Sales question
- Technical issues
- Product availability
Traffic, page views, Frequently Asked Questions pages, and help articles offer another way to measure where customers require the most assistance.
5. Ticket volume
In addition to tracking which issues come up most often, it’s just as important to keep an eye on the volume of tickets you receive over time.
Suppose the number of tickets you receive is on the rise—especially in a specific area. In that case, it may be necessary to revisit communications strategies, help articles, or even policies and operations. It’s also crucial for managers to be aware of how much pressure their support teams are under, so they can provide necessary assistance before burnout becomes a problem.
How do you calculate ticket volume? Record how many tickets you receive at regular intervals: day by day, week by week, or month by month. For visual analysis, plot these results on a line graph (like we do in our customer service report template, which you can download here).
If you notice spikes, try to pinpoint what may have caused them, such as product releases, global events, or even a social media crisis. That way you can devise plans and better allocate resources in the future.
6. Customer retention rate (CRR)
A customer retention rate measures the number of clients a company retains over a select period.
This metric is vital for companies that provide a regular or subscription-based service. Depending on the industry, companies may record retention rates weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annually.
To calculate customer retention rate, you’ll need to record:
S = Number of customers at the start of the period
E = Number of customers at the end of the period
N = Number of customers added during the period
With that information, calculate customer retention rate with the following formula:
[(E-N)/S] *100 = CRR
For example, say you have 100 customers at the start of your timeframe (S), 90 customers at the end of the period (E), and you added 15 customers (N). Your customer retention rate would be 75%.
7. Churn rate
Remember: Good customer service is about building long-term relationships with customers. Churn rate measures the percentage of your customers that leave your brand versus those that stick around.
Customer churn rate is measured for a specific amount of time. The most common timeframes are monthly, quarterly, and annual.
To measure churn rate, take the number of customers you lose over the period and divide it by the total number of customers you had at the start of the period. Don’t include new customers acquired over the period in your equation, since that will skew your results.
Churn rate = (Customers lost over a period/Customers at the start of the period) x 100
You can also compare churn rates for different segments of your customer base to see if some products or product bundling strategies are creating greater customer success than others.
Source: J.P. Morgan Global High Yield & Leveraged Finance Conference presentation by Jean-François Parent, Vice President and Treasurer, Quebecor Inc., QMI and Videotron
8. Customer acquisition cost (CAC)
Customer acquisition cost tracks the average amount of money spent on sales and marketing to obtain each new customer.
This metric provides a partial way to track the ROI of social media, marketing, and sales teams. In an ideal situation, as teams scale their efforts, CAC should go down, and ROI should go up.
The formula for CAC is straightforward: The amount spent on sales and marketing over a given period divided by the number of customers acquired in the same timeframe:
CAC = Sales and marketing spend / customers acquired
For example, if you spent $10,000 on sales and marketing and acquired 20,000 customers, your cost per acquisition is 50 cents.
A lower amount is a better result—but it could also mean you have a low sales and marketing budget. That’s why it’s essential to view this figure in tandem with customer service satisfaction metrics and growth and performance results.
9. Customer lifetime value (CLV)
Customer lifetime value is a measure of how much you can expect to earn from a single customer over the entire lifetime of their relationship with your brand.
CLV that’s higher than the average initial purchase means that customers make multiple purchases from your company over time. That indicates a healthy brand relationship and great brand loyalty.
In order to measure CLV, you’ll need to have a few data points about customer behavior.
CLV = Average purchase value x Average purchase frequency x Average customer lifespan
For example, one research analyst estimated Amazon’s customer lifetime value as $2,283 from Prime members and $916 for non-Prime members.
This is also an important metric for understanding how much you can afford to spend on social media advertising to acquire a new customer.
10. Recurring revenue
Recurring revenue is another way to measure how many of your customers are sticking around. It can also give you a sense of whether people are upgrading or downgrading their recurring level of spend.
You can measure recurring revenue on any time period that aligns with the renewal/notice period for your subscription products or services. The most common options are monthly recurring revenue (MRR) and annualized recurring revenue (ARR).
To measure MRR, multiply your number of active users by the average monthly revenue per user.
MRR = Number of active users x Average monthly revenue per user
11. Expansion revenue
The recurring revenue metric above measures how much you’re bringing in on a recurring basis. Expansion revenue measures how much revenue comes from upgrades, premium products, and so on. This is a great measure of customer success because it indicates customers are willing to spend more than the basic amount required to access your service.
To calculate expansion revenue, tally all the revenue brought in from add-ons, upgrades, and so on.
To calculate expansion revenue per user, divide the total by the number of users.
Expansion revenue per user = Total revenue from adds-ons and upgrades/Number of users
12. Revenue contraction
Revenue contraction is the opposite of expansion revenue. In this case, you’re measuring how much revenue is lost from downgrades. This is similar to churn in that it indicates people are not seeing success with their premium plans.
Churn measures how many customers you lose entirely. Revenue contraction measures how much income you lose from customers who stick around but downgrade their plan.
One interesting example of revenue contraction comes from streaming services, many of which have recently introduced ad-supported lower-cost plans. Research from analysis company Antenna shows that downgrades from an ad-free plan represented 29% of new additions to the ad-plan offering over the first 13 months.
Keep in mind that while HBO MAx loses subscription money from these downgrades, they gain ad revenue. So it’s not a straight income loss. But it is still a good measure of the value customers place on premium versus basic plans.
To calculate revenue contraction, tally all the revenue lost from downgrades. To calculate contraction per user, divide the total by the number of users.
Revenue contraction per user = Total revenue lost from downgrades/Number of users
13. Average revenue per user (ARPU)
If you don’t have a subscription model, you don’t necessarily have recurring revenue. But it’s still important to keep an eye on how your average customer spend is changing over time. Customers who are experiencing success with your brand will generally spend more, while those who are less satisfied will spend less.
To measure ARPU, divide your total revenue over a period by your average number of active users over that period.
ARPU = Total revenue/Number of active users
Since ARPU is such an important measure of brand health, it often appears in earnings and investor reports.
14. Average response time
Average response time tracks how long it takes for customers to first hear from a support agent — it essentially measures the wait times involved in speaking with your team.
A short reply time is a mark of good customer service, especially online, where customers pretty much expect service on-demand. For this reason, many companies rely on bots to handle initial queries.
There are plenty of automation tools, such as Hootsuite Inbox, that provide average ticket handling time reports.
If you’d like to calculate it manually, use the following formula:
Average response time = Total time taken for first response to customer queries / Number of queries
15. Average resolution time
Average resolution time measures how long it takes for customer tickets to be resolved. For a customer and an organization, the sooner customer issues can be resolved, the better.
If you receive a high volume of customer queries, the more necessary it is to use tools to calculate resolution times accurately. Here’s how to calculate it manually:
Average resolution time = Total time spent on resolved cases / number of resolved cases
16. First contact resolution rate
Another key customer service performance metric is first contact resolution rate. Customers don’t like to be passed from one agent to another. Not only does this reflect poorly on the organization, it also often leads to longer resolution times.
If you have a low first contact resolution rate, chances are you’ll also have a high customer effort score (CES). Especially if the customer is asked to explain their issue more than once.
Like average response rate and resolution time, many platforms automatically calculate this for you. Here’s the manual formula, just in case:
First contact resolution rate = Number of cases resolved with one agent / number of resolved cases
17. Overall resolution rate
Not all cases end with a happy resolution. That’s normal. But a good resolution rate should always be the goal.
Here’s how to calculate your overall resolution rate:
Overall resolution rate = Number of resolved cases / number of unresolved cases
If your resolution rate is low, it’s necessary to do a little more digging—especially if your customer retention rate (CRR) is low as well. Get more granular by looking to see if there’s a specific ticket category that’s bringing your overall resolution rate down and develop relevant solutions.
18. Preferred communication channels
In order to deliver top-rate customer service, it’s necessary to know where customers expect to receive support.
Keep track of the methods and platforms customers use to contact your businesses so you can allocate resources accordingly. For example, if you receive a high volume of support requests on Twitter, it may be time to open a customer service Twitter account.
Free customer service report template
We designed a simple customer service report template in Google Sheets to help you keep track of your customer service efforts month by month. To use or customize this template, go to “File” and “Make a copy” first.
The first tab has a tracker for all your primary and secondary customer service metrics.
The second tab contains a ticket volume tracker, visualized in a line graph where you can easily see which type of tickets you get the most of and identify any rising problem categories or spikes. You can also use this chart to communicate with the product team if, for example, you see spikes in returns, technical issues, or product availability.
The third tab contains all the formulas and definitions you will need to fill out your report, almost like a customer service metrics calculator. Below is a screenshot of the NPS calculator.
Save time on social messaging and improve your customer service metrics with automated responses, smarter workflows, handy surveys, and friendly chatbots — all in the Hootsuite Inbox.
YouTube Shorts Monetization Guide [How Much Can You Make?]
Just like all the other social platforms, YouTube has been leaning hard into short-form video content, with a Shorts tab on the main menu and a prominent Shorts feature on the watch page. So, it’s no surprise that YouTube Shorts reached two billion monthly logged-in users as of July 2023.
In this post, we talk specifically about YouTube Shorts monetization, a.k.a. how to make money from your YouTube Shorts. If you’re looking for a more general primer on this format, check out our blog post on how to make YouTube Shorts.
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Can you monetize YouTube Shorts?
It’s been possible to monetize regular long-form YouTube videos for more than 15 years now. In that time, creators, artists, and media companies have earned more than $50 billion from their YouTube content.
But Shorts are a much newer format, and they weren’t originally part of the YouTube Partner Program (YPP). Fortunately for all those who found themselves wondering, “When will YouTube Shorts be monetized?,” the platform announced YouTube Shorts monetization options in late 2022. Since then, creators who focus on YouTube’s short video format have been able to earn money from their work.
How does YouTube Shorts monetization work?
YouTube Shorts monetization is, well, a little complicated. The sources of monetization are:
- YouTube Shorts ad revenue sharing
- YouTube Premium subscription revenue sharing for Shorts
- YouTube Shopping
- YouTube fan funding
YouTube first launched Shorts monetization through the YouTube Shorts fund in 2021. It was a $100 million fund intended to encourage the adoption of the new format by rewarding Shorts creators who made the most engaging content. It was always meant to be a stopgap measure while YouTube worked on a long-term model for monetizing Shorts. This fund was discontinued when the Shorts ad revenue sharing model launched in February 2023.
YouTube Shorts ad revenue sharing
In this method of seeing your YouTube Shorts monetized, you get a share of the revenue generated from ads between videos in the Shorts feed. Your share is based on a four-step formula.
Source: YouTube Help
- YouTube adds together all the revenue from ads shown between videos in the Shorts feed.
- YouTube calculates how much of the revenue associated with Shorts is needed to cover music licensing for tracks used in Shorts. That money is paid directly to music partners. The rest of the ad revenue goes into the Creator Pool
- YouTube allocates a percentage of the total Creator Pool to each monetizing creator based on their share of total views in each country.
- YouTube applies the revenue share formula: They take 55% of the allocated revenue and you get 45%.
YouTube Premium subscription revenue sharing for Shorts
Like ad revenue sharing, this method of seeing your YouTube Shorts monetized allocates payments based on your share of views within your country. In this case, the formula only applies to subscription Shorts views.
Here’s how YouTube describes the formula:
“YouTube will pay 45% of the net revenue from YouTube Premium that is allocated to monetizing creators for Shorts. A portion of YouTube Premium revenues are allocated to help cover costs of music licensing.”
You can see your estimated daily Shorts Feed ad revenue in YouTube Analytics.
YouTube Shopping features
In addition to revenue sharing from ads and Premium subscriptions, you can monetize your YouTube Shorts using YouTube Shopping to promote your products.
If your Short features products, you can tag them during the upload flow. A product overlay will then show on your content, which allows users to browse and purchase your products without leaving YouTube while continuing to watch your Short.
YouTube Fan Funding
Once you turn on YouTube monetization, you’re eligible for all YouTube fan funding options, including:
- Super Thanks
- Super Chat
- Super Stickers, and
- Channel Memberships
The most relevant to creators focused on YouTube Shorts are Super Thanks and Channel Memberships.
Formerly known as Viewer Applause, Super Thanks is a way for your biggest fans to show appreciation for your content. Through Super Thanks, a viewer purchases a one-time animation that only they see over the top of your Short. They also get to post a customizable and colorful comment in the comments section of the Short.
Super Thanks is available at four price points, ranging from $2 to $50. You get 70% of the Super Thanks revenue after taxes and fees.
Source: YouTube Official Blog
Meanwhile, channel memberships is a fan funding program that allows you to reward paid members with perks like badges, emojis, exclusive content, and live streams.
You can set your membership tiers as low as $0.99 and as high as $499. You can have up to five tiers with different monthly price points and perks. Creators keep 70% of that amount, while YouTube takes a 30% commission.
Who is eligible for YouTube Shorts monetization?
To be eligible for full YouTube Shorts monetization, you need to have a minimum of 1,000 subscribers. You also need to have either 10 million valid public Shorts views in the last 90 days or 4,000 valid public watch hours of long-form videos in the last 12 months.
Public watch hours from Shorts in the Shorts Feed don’t count towards the watch hour threshold, so the Shorts views requirement is the better target if you focus primarily on Shorts.
Source: YouTube Help
Can you monetize YouTube Shorts before you hit these thresholds? Yes, but in a limited way. In June 2023, YouTube launched an expanded program to allow newer creators and those with a smaller following to monetize through YouTube Shopping and fan funding.
However, you will not have access to Shorts ad revenue sharing or YouTube Premium subscription revenue sharing.
To apply for this expanded program, you need to have 500 subscribers. You also need three valid public uploads in the last 90 days and three million valid public Shorts views in the last 90 days. (Or 3,000 valid public watch hours of long-form videos in the past year.)
Source: YouTube Help
For both programs, you must also:
- Understand and comply with the YouTube Channel Monetization policies.
- Live in a region where the program is available. (The expanded program is for now only available in these countries.)
- Ensure your channel doesn’t have any active Community Guidelines Strikes.
- Turn on 2-step verification for your Google account.
- Have access to advanced features on YouTube based on your channel history or by verifying your identity (not applicable for the expanded program).
- Have an active AdSense account.
You can log into YouTube Studio at any time to see how close you are to eligibility, and request notification when you’re eligible.
Source: YouTube Studio
How to start monetizing YouTube Shorts
Here’s how to become part of the YouTube Partner Program and start monetizing your YouTube Shorts.
- Sign in to YouTube.
- Click your profile picture in the top right and then click YouTube Studio.
- Click Earn in the left menu.
- If you’re eligible, you’ll see an Apply button. Go ahead and click it. If you’re not yet eligible, click the Get Notified button to come back and finish the process once you meet the requirements.
- Click Start to review and Accept the Base terms.
- Link your existing AdSense account, or click Start to set up a new one if you need to.
- Wait for YouTube to review your application. (This usually takes about a month, so be patient.)
- Once you are approved, go back to the Earn section of YouTube Studio and accept the Shorts Monetization Module.
Note: These are the instructions for applying from your computer. The specific instructions are slightly different for Android and iOS, but in both cases, you start by opening the YouTube Studio app and tapping Earn in the bottom menu.
To start monetizing with Super Thanks fan funding, go to the Earn tab in YouTube Studio and click Supers. Click Get Started and follow the prompts.
For Channel Memberships, go to the Earn tab, then click Memberships and Get Started.
How much can you earn through YouTube Shorts monetization?
Unfortunately, the earnings from YouTube Shorts are – at least so far – not spectacular. The consensus among YouTube Shorts creators is that revenue per thousand views (RPM) is coming in around $0.05 to $0.07. That’s about $50 to $70 for a million views.
For those of you curious about YouTube Shorts monetization updates, here is Feb2-Feb 8th earnings from approx 35 Million views. pic.twitter.com/kMyjW6KB0b
— Zach King (@zachking) February 10, 2023
YouTube Shopping revenue will depend entirely on how well you promote your products and the price point of those products. Keep an eye on Revenue in your YouTube Analytics to see how much you earn through your YouTube Shopping tags in Shorts.
Likewise, Super Thanks will depend on how much your fans value your content, and how close a connection you form with them. Super Thanks is, after all, like a digital tip.
So: Are YouTube Shorts monetized? Yes. But, the earnings are not going to replace what a creator would typically earn from long-form YouTube videos.
However, as you’ll see below, the YouTube Shorts monetization features are not the only way to earn money with your short-form content on YouTube.
4 other ways to make money with YouTube Shorts
1. Join an affiliate program
There are two ways to make money on YouTube Shorts with an affiliate program, depending on how big your channel is and where you live
YouTube Shopping Affiliate Program
If you have more than 20,000 subscribers and are based in the United States, you may be eligible for the official YouTube Shopping Affiliate Program. This program allows you to use YouTube Shopping to promote products from other brands in your Shorts and earn a commission.
Just like regular YouTube Shopping, you can tag the products directly in your content and use a call to action to let viewers know where to shop. You can also request product samples from select brands to help you plan and develop future YouTube Shorts.
External affiliate programs
You can also use YouTube Shorts to promote affiliate programs that you join directly. There’s no set number of subscribers for this, or any required amount of watch time.
You simply find an affiliate program that relates to products you mention in your Shorts, and then earn an affiliate commission for sales you refer to that retailer. In this case, you get paid by the retailer that runs the affiliate program (or their affiliate network), rather than by YouTube itself. So how do you actually direct viewers to your affiliate link?
This YouTube creator uses a pinned comment on his Shorts to direct viewers to his profile for links to specific products. Think of it as the YouTube Shorts equivalent to an Instagram link in bio.
He is promoting products using the Amazon Associates program. Since this is one of the largest affiliate programs out there, we’ve got a whole blog post on everything you need to know about Amazon Associates.
Shorts that include affiliate content must follow Google’s Ad Policies and Community Guidelines. You also need to disclose that there is paid promotion in the Short. During the upload workflow, tap Yes, it includes paid promotion, then tap Yes.
Your Short will then show a label to let viewers know that the video includes paid promotion.
If you’re interested in this approach to YouTube Shorts monetization, check out our post on how to use affiliate marketing.
2. Work with brands
Rather than applying for affiliate programs, you can reach out to brands to work with them directly. If you have a large enough following, brands may even start to reach out to you.
Working with a brand as a YouTube Shorts influencer could mean anything from free products to getting paid a fee to create and post brand-specific content.
As with affiliate marketing in YouTube Shorts, you need to disclose the brand relationship using the paid promotion disclosure option in the upload workflow.
If you were an artist living in Renaissance Europe, you’d likely have a patron to fund your work. Patreon brings this concept into modern times by allowing content creators to monetize their content through paid subscriptions.
Video is the top content format on Patreon, so it’s a good fit for monetizing YouTube Shorts. You could use Shorts to share an excerpt of a deep-dive video and let viewers know the full story is available through one of your Patreon membership tiers.
Or, you could use the Community tab on Patreon to chat with your patrons and develop a community.
So, what’s the advantage of using Patreon over YouTube channel memberships? First off, you can create a Patreon with no minimum subscriber or watchtime threshold.
Beyond that, you’ll need to explore each program to see which makes more sense for your specific situation and the perks you want to provide.
For more ideas, check out our full blog post on how to earn money with Patreon.
4. Use Shorts to grow viewership for long-form videos
While this is not strictly speaking a direct form of YouTube Shorts monetization, it’s an important thing to think about when calculating ROI for your YouTube Shorts.
Sure, the YouTube Partner Program payouts for YouTube Shorts are not spectacular. But, especially for new YouTube creators, Shorts can be the one of fastest ways to build your audience. You can then create and monetize regular long-form YouTube videos, which earn ad revenue at a much higher RPM.
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5 B2B Social Media Marketing Tactics That Actually Work
B2B social media marketing can be an effective way for brands to build awareness, strengthen relationships, and close sales. But B2B social marketers face unique challenges when it comes to tone and content mix.
So, how do you use social tools to bring in (and keep) followers, create engagement, build brand awareness, and fill your funnel? Read on for all the tips you need to build an effective B2B social media strategy.
Bonus: Get a free social media strategy template to quickly and easily plan your own strategy. Also use it to track results and present the plan to your boss, teammates, and clients.
B2B social media marketing is the use of social channels to market products or services to business clients and prospects. (B2B stands for business-to-business, as opposed to business-to-consumer or B2C.)
Marketers at B2C companies use social channels to reach consumers and influence purchases. Effective B2B marketing requires a different approach. B2B marketers have to think more strategically to reach business owners and decision-makers. They then nurture relationships that can lead to large purchase agreements.
All social channels can have a place in B2B marketing. But the balance and type of content will look different for a B2B social media strategy than for a consumer-focused plan.
B2B social media success begins with a sound B2B social media strategy. Here’s how to build one for your brand.
1. Align goals with business objectives
Just like a good B2C strategy, every B2B social media plan should answer the following two questions:
- What are the company’s business objectives?
- How will B2B social media marketing help achieve them?
But the similarities mostly end here. B2B and B2C social media marketers use social platforms for different purposes. B2C social media campaigns drive sales, while B2B social is more “top of funnel.” Social media goals for B2B marketers should likely focus on longer-term business objectives.
In fact, the top 3 overall goals for B2B companies are:
- Create brand awareness
- Build trust and credibility
- Educate audiences
Generating sales or revenue comes in at number 8.
Those top three goals all contribute to social media B2B lead generation. Successful B2B marketers also use content marketing to nurture subscribers, audiences, or leads.
Our blog post on goal-setting can help you establish the right goals and objectives for your B2B social media plan.
Don’t forget to include internal objectives and goals within your plan. According to research published in the Journal of Business Logistics, social media can help account managers increase both product and competitor knowledge.
2. Know your audience
Your corporate structure probably caters to various client personas. Or, at least, different client categories.
For instance, a design firm might work for commercial, public, and residential customers. It likely has team members or verticals that specialize in each category.
Your B2B social media marketing strategy should do the same. Focus on building fleshed-out buyer personas of your ideal customers. These will allow you to create social media content that speaks to real people.
Understanding your audience also means understanding which social channels they use. As a general rule, you should be where your customers are. Not sure where that might be? Start with the overall social media demographics. Then, dive into some audience research.
Source: Content Marketing Institute
For paid social media posts, the picture for B2B social media platforms is similar but not identical. LinkedIn again comes out on top (78%). But Instagram outranks YouTube and Twitter (a.k.a. X) is down at the bottom of the pack.
Source: Content Marketing Institute
Separate channels may also be relevant for different verticals, products, and markets. Depending on the industry and size of your business, you might want to consider:
- a news channel
- a careers channel
- a customer service account
Or any other account that speaks to a specific audience within your niche. Make sure you’re delivering the information your target audience wants in the right place and at the right time.
Keep in mind that B2B social marketing will likely become even more personalized in the future. Account-based marketing (ABM) will become the norm. In ABM, sales and marketing teams work together. They personalize outreach and marketing to decision-makers at target companies.
Social media is a prime tool for ABM. For instance, social listening allows you to keep tabs on your most important prospects.
3. Understand the competition
While you never want to copy the competition, it’s always useful to know what they’re up to. Understanding what the competition is doing helps you understand your own specific niche.
You can get an even better understanding of the competition by using social media listening to monitor their social media activities, so you can gain insights from their B2B social media examples. Such as:
- When and how often they post
- What kinds of voice and tone they use
- What kind of content gets the most engagement
- Specific customer pain points that may be unaddressed
You can use this information to guide your own social strategy. Especially before you have enough data to get meaningful insights from your own social posts. (More on that later.)
Want more details on competitor research? We’ve got a full blog post on how to conduct a competitor analysis on social media.
4. Create a content calendar and content library
Once you understand your customers and the competition, it’s time to think about what and when you will post on social media.
First, you need to plan your content calendar: What you will post on each of your social accounts and when. Deciding on the right content mix is an important part of this step, as no one will want to follow you if all you do is promote your products. We’ve got some content ideas for you later on in this post.
A social media management platform organizes your content calendar so you can create and schedule content in advance. And 76% of the most successful B2B businesses do so.
Hootsuite’s Composer allows you to schedule all of your social media channels from one screen. You have a holistic view of your content distribution. This advance planning gives you time to use the built-in content approval workflows. Composer also recommends the best time to post on each platform based on your past performance and selected goals.
Hootsuite’s content library is another important feature for B2B marketers. You can use the library to store pre-approved content and brand assets.
This protects your brand identity and reputation while making life easier for all members of the content creation team.
5. Analyze and refine
Almost all (87%) of the most successful B2B content marketers say they measure their content performance accurately. Compare that to only 19% of the least successful.
What metrics and data should you monitor? This depends on your business goals. You might focus on response time, impressions, engagement rate, conversions, sales, and more. The important thing is to set benchmarks and achievable goals.
Don’t ignore barometers like customer satisfaction ratings, qualitative reviews, and your Net Promoter Score. Look at reductions in recruitment and customer support costs as well. All of this contributes to return on investment.
Be realistic about what efforts you’ll have hard numbers for and which will be trickier to quantify. Remember, just because you can measure something doesn’t always mean you should. And just because you can’t measure something (easily) doesn’t mean it’s not worthwhile.
Your best ally in building out a performance measurement plan is a good social media analytics tool. Hootsuite Analytics gives you one-screen access to performance data from every social network, including easy-to-understand graphics and charts.
Speak to humans, not businesses
Remember that you’re not talking to brands – you’re talking to the people behind those brands. Likewise, they want to do business with the humans behind your brand.
In the LinkedIn B2B Thought Leadership Impact study, 64% of executives said they prefer “a more human, less formal tone of voice” over “an even-toned, intellectual voice.”
And you’re not just talking to CEOs and purchasing officers. Younger people will move up the ranks and be making purchasing decisions within a few years. It pays to nurture relationships with industry pros at all stages of their careers.
One simple way to break out of the boardroom with your content is to get your employees involved. Tell their stories. Highlight their accomplishments. Real people make your social media presence and brand voice appear more human and boost your recruiting efforts.
Tip: You can easily build a streamlined employee social program using Hootsuite Amplify.
Help your audience do their jobs
Think about ways you can make your followers’ (work) lives easier or more enjoyable. Provide content and resources that delight them in some way. Think how-to information, industry news, trends, tips, strategy, and so on.
Thought leadership is particularly important. 61% of decision-makers say thought leadership can be ”moderately or a lot more effective at demonstrating the potential value of its products/services compared to traditional product-oriented marketing.”
In content that does specifically promote your product, focus on how it will directly benefit the customer in real business terms. The latest Linked-in-Edelman B2B Thought Leadership Impact Report found that non-business-critical suppliers can best increase their chances of making a sale by:
- Proving they will increase a prospect’s profit margins or minimize losses
- Showing they can increase the likelihood of the prospect retaining customers and clients during a downturn
- Showing they can help the prospect outperform competitors
Use humor your followers will understand
B2B social media is about starting conversations and building relationships that lead to sales in the long term. That “long term” part is key, though. Followers aren’t going to stick around if your content doesn’t interest them.
So don’t let B2B’s reputation for boring content hold you back. Humor is an import tool in your content-creation toolbox. You just have to find the right tone.
What kind of humor speaks directly to your audience? Is there an inside joke that only industry pros will understand? A pun that will amuse your followers while highlighting your product benefits? Signal to your audience that you understand social media is primarily a platform for content that entertains and delights.
Respond to DMs and comments
If we were to highlight the most important component of a B2B social media strategy, this would probably be it. Anyone who comments on your content or sends you a DM is expressing interest in your brand. They’re practically raising their hands and shouting, “Hey! I’m a lead!”
That said, it’s easy for comments and DMs to get lost when you’re juggling multiple social platforms, each with its own inbox. A consolidated social media inbox like the one built into Hootsuite makes sure you never miss a thing.
Hootsuite Inbox also speeds up your response time by automatically routing messages through to the most appropriate person on your team. This ensures potential sales don’t get bogged down in the customer service queue.
1. Share a free resource
A free resource like a white paper or report can be a valuable way to earn the trust of your B2B social media followers. But only if the report provides quality information backed up by reliable data and research – and offers real-world suggestions for how to incorporate that information into operations.
Two of the main qualities business leaders look for in thought leadership content are “robust research and strong supporting data” and “concrete guidance on how to respond to the issues or opportunities discussed.”
For example, here’s the primary and secondary data information for the Hootsuite 2023 Social Media Career Report:
And here are some of the ways Hootsuite shared the report on social media:
But how much asking is too much? 🤣
All kidding aside, this is why you must ask for the damn raise already! You deserve it for so many reasons.
— Hootsuite 🦉 (@hootsuite) September 19, 2023
2. Crack a joke
We talked about humor earlier in this post. Here’s where the rubber hits the road. From a tongue-in-cheek play on words, to a funny meme, to a straight-up dad joke, tickle your followers’ funny bones from time to time to keep them coming back for more.
The level of humor can vary with the platform, and should be based on audience research. For instance, you can likely skew a lot more silly on TikTok than on LinkedIn.
@artandsuchevan finds creativity in the tiniest and most unexpected places ✨
Keep a close eye on your analytics after posting anything outside the norm for your brand to see how your audience responds. If they love it, give them more. If the response is tepid or you see an unusual number of unfollows, rethink your strategy and try a different approach to humor.
3. Join a relevant conversation
We talked about social listening above in the context of competitor research. But it’s also a great way to find conversations relevant to your industry and your brand.
Simply add relevant hashtags and industry terms to your Hootsuite streams. When you find a relevant conversation, pop in with helpful information (never a hard sell). This is all about building relationships and creating brand awareness.
For example, when Patrick Mahomes was caught correcting an awkward grammar mistake on Twitter (shout out to the edit button!), both Grammarly and Merriam-Webster jumped in.
The edit deserves a touchdown.🏈
— Grammarly (@Grammarly) September 12, 2023
Proud of this edit.
— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) September 12, 2023
4. Share some stats
We’ve talked about the importance of thought leadership already. Quick stats and infographics are an easy and effective way to share thought leadership on social media without requiring followers to dive deep into a long report.
Infographics are snackable and highly shareable, meaning they can help your content spread well beyond your own social followers.
Business can be tough, and you can gain a lot of brand loyalty by showing you understand the difficulties employees face. Remember, you need to win the hearts and minds of future business leaders, not just those who are making purchasing decisions today.
We hope this message finds you well. Unless you’re on PTO. In that case, we hope this message does not find you; we hope you find yourself with a fully recharged battery. 🔋
— Slack (@SlackHQ) September 19, 2023
Easily manage all your social media profiles using Hootsuite. From a single dashboard, you can schedule and publish posts, engage your followers, monitor relevant conversations, measure results, manage your ads, and much more.
2023 Average Engagement Rates for 13 Industries [STATS]
So you’ve planned and launched a social media campaign, and waited patiently for the likes, comments, and conversions to roll in. Now you’re looking at your performance report, wondering what the numbers actually mean. Is a 2% engagement rate high or low? Did your target audience love your campaign, or was it a flop?
Without social media benchmarks (a.k.a. average performance stats for a social platform or industry), it’s difficult to make sense of raw data. But we got you. In this post, we’ve rounded up average social media engagement rates from 13 top industries to give you a better understanding of where you stand. (And empower you to brag to your boss with data-informed confidence — you’re welcome.)
We’ve even included a simple (and free!) engagement rate calculator you can use to quickly double-check your own performance stats.
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Below, you’ll find the latest average engagement rates (per post), broken down by industry and social network.
Where did this data come from? Our team collects and anonymously compiles data from social accounts connected to Hootsuite. Each benchmark is based on at least 100 social accounts, and no data can be traced back to any individual account.
For more benchmarks (including impressions, audience growth rate, posting frequency, and much more) and insights that will help you improve your marketing strategy, start a free 30-day Hootsuite trial and browse stats from your industry — and hand-picked competitors — in Hootsuite Analytics
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 1.02%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 2.06%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 0.82%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.18%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.71%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 1.03%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 3.16%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 1.63%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.81%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.52%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 1.4%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 1.66%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 1.09%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.32%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 9.77%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 0.99%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 1.87%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 0.97%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.74%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.64%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 0.79%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 1.49%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 0.71%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.11%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.64%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 1.33%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 2.05%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 1.64%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 2.14%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.8%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 0.92%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 2.28%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 1.31%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.61%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.75%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 1.18%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 2.47%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 1.61%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 2.26%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.63%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 0.81%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 1.5%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 1.01%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.68%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.39%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 0.87%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 2.07%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 0.82%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.29%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 1.21%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 0.89%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 1.62%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 1.05%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.55%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.36%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 1.34%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 1.47%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 1%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.72%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 0.55%
- Average X (Twitter) engagement rate: 1.32%
- Average Instagram engagement rate: 1.7%
- Average Facebook engagement rate: 0.97%
- Average LinkedIn engagement rate: 1.47%
- Average TikTok engagement rate: 6.01%
Across almost all industries, Instagram consistently has the highest average rates compared to other social networks.
Interestingly, educational institutions generated higher Instagram engagement than any other industry in September. If you run social media for a school, college, or university and struggle to get your engagement rates up to the industry average, here are some tips that will help.
Exceptionally high TikTok engagement rates suggest that short-form video is a great way to capture audience attention in these sectors. If you operate in one of these industries and haven’t started using TikTok to promote your business yet, you might be missing out! Our beginner’s guide to TikTok marketing will help you get started and connect with TikTok’s hyper-engaged community.
In general, financial institutions and tech companies appear to generate slightly lower social media engagement compared to other sectors — on every social media platform except for LinkedIn. This might be because these industries deal with complex and technical topics that can be challenging to engage a broad audience.
Remember: It’s not a product or service that makes something seem “boring” — it’s bad marketing. You can create engaging social content even if your industry has a boring reputation. Not sure how? Check out these blog posts for inspiration:
Restaurants and other food-related businesses see high engagement on Instagram — which makes perfect sense, considering the platform’s focus on visual content (and its users’ obsession with posting pictures of their meals).
Ready to compare your performance to industry benchmarks? Use this free tool to find out your engagement rate by post.
Note: If you’re calculating your account’s total engagement, include information about all your posts (e.g total number of posts published, total number of likes, and so on). If you’re calculating the engagement rate of a specific social media marketing campaign, only include the details of the posts that were part of the campaign.
If you’re looking for more detailed data or you want to calculate different kinds of engagement (like engagement rate by reach or engagement rate by impressions), download our free spreadsheet calculator that will do the math for you.
Or, better yet, start a free 30-day Hootsuite trial to easily track the performance of all your social channels in one place (so you can replicate what works and get more engagement). Hootsuite’s social media analytics tool collects your stats from Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and TikTok.
With Hootsuite Analytics, you can also:
- Find out when your audience is online
- Get personalized recommendations for your best times to post for each of your accounts
- Easily view industry benchmarks and see how you compare to competitors
Use Hootsuite to track and improve engagement rates across all your social media channels. Try it free today.
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