Social Media Impact on Business

It seems obvious that companies should and are spending time and money on social media, but determining what the impact and success of these tools are on businesses still remains a challenge. The most basic form of assessing social media impact is looking at hits, page views, and visits, which is not the most reliable way of determining the impact social media is having  (Moorman, 2015). In some ways the information businesses get from these types of metrics are more like “vanity metrics” (Madison, 2012). Vanity metrics are the pieces of data or information that look good on paper, such as saying how many likes you have, but don’t tell you anything meaningful about what social media is actually doing for your business.

There are several ways social media metrics can really have an impact on a business and their marketing and promotional strategies. Some of these include:

  • Using social media to compare how a brand compares with other competitors
  • Look at Shares rather than Likes to determine how deep your content is going
  • Look not just at how many new customers you have, but what your current customers are doing that impacts getting new customers  (Huggestien, 2014)

With new social media tools being formed so quickly and how instantaneously current tools are adapting to new users, technologies, and platforms, the depth of what social media metrics can tell you is significant.

For more information check out some of these library resources:

  • Search “social media metrics” in Octopus

BrilliantSocialMedia  UnderstandingSocialMediaTheSocialMediaBible


Haggestuen, J. (2014, February 21). These Are The Metrics That Really Matter For Social Media [web log post]. Retrieved from

Madison, I. (2012, December 18). Why Your Social Media Metrics Are a Waste of Time [web log post]. Retrieved from

Moorman, C. (2015, January 18). Measuring the Impact of Social Media on Your Business [web log post]. Retrieved from


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