Social mar­ket­ing has matured over the years and we have moved away from sim­ple exper­i­men­ta­tion in the space and are now expected (often by exec­u­tive man­date) to show the impact of our invest­ments in grow­ing our social com­mu­ni­ties.  Likes, com­ments, fol­low­ers, and retweets are no longer a key proxy of suc­cess because they are not con­nected to met­rics that have mean­ing to the over­all busi­ness goals.  Social must be weaved into already exist­ing ana­lyt­ics col­lec­tion method­olo­gies and report­ing work­flows and be held to the same stan­dards as the rest of the dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing efforts.

Social must be weaved into already exist­ing ana­lyt­ics col­lec­tion method­olo­gies and report­ing work­flows and be held to the same stan­dards as the rest of the dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing efforts.

Adobe Social has been built with this phi­los­o­phy in mind.  We pro­vide the abil­ity to auto­mate mea­sure­ment of all social links and appli­ca­tions to ensure that when some­one con­verts onsite we have the appro­pri­ate data avail­able to mea­sure the influ­ence of social touch points on that con­ver­sion event. In tra­di­tional mar­ket­ing, efforts to engage our cus­tomer base are orga­nized around “Cam­paigns”.  These are coor­di­nated activ­i­ties and mes­sages over a spe­cific time frame that have com­mon mes­sag­ing, cre­ative assets, and goals.  We are now see­ing Social Mar­keters invited to col­lab­o­rate on these large, multi-channel cam­paigns, and often play a key role in deliv­er­ing cam­paign expe­ri­ences to their social com­mu­ni­ties with an affixed bud­get and expected return. At times, even the most expe­ri­enced social mar­keters will look at the com­plex­i­ties of dig­i­tal ana­lyt­ics and rec­og­nize it as a for­eign lan­guage, and as a result, much of the social con­tent is pub­lished with­out mea­sure­ment.  This causes us to severely under report the influ­ence social is hav­ing on busi­ness success.

Let’s say I am a Social Mar­keter for Geometrixx Out­doors, a large out­doors retailer.

running_shoe_launchI have coor­di­nated with the broader Mar­ket­ing team on the release of a new run­ning shoe line that we are announc­ing in a few weeks from now.  This is a coor­di­nated approach with Social hav­ing a large role to drive aware­ness and bring cus­tomers back to the new land­ing pages to learn more and when the time comes, pur­chase the new shoes. We have cre­ated a cal­en­dar of social posts lead­ing up to and through the shoe launch with a series of links back to the site, land­ing pages, and prod­uct pages.  In order to be mea­sured correctly, each of these links need a cam­paign code appended that will indi­cate that it is a part of the run­ning shoe launch campaign.


What is con­fig­ured dur­ing imple­men­ta­tion of Adobe Social?

Let’s get a bit tech­ni­cal for a minute.  When Adobe Social is con­fig­ured, you will need to coor­di­nate with the ana­lyt­ics team on cam­paign data col­lec­tion con­ven­tions to make sure you under­stand which query string para­me­ter to use for your cam­paign codes.  A few exam­ples that I have seen used are ‘cid’, ‘socid’, ‘cmpid’ etc.  Essen­tially what this means is that when some­one clicks on one of your links, the des­ti­na­tion page URL will look some­thing like this:


If the ana­lyt­ics team told you to use ‘cid’ or some­thing sim­i­lar, it is because they have setup mea­sure­ment for that query string para­me­ter which fires when that code is present.  This is a back­end set­ting in Adobe Social and should be given to your Social Account Man­ager to con­fig­ure for you. This is only a one time setting.

Now that we under­stand how it works and is con­fig­ured, lets get in and cre­ate our cam­paign in Adobe Social:

New CampaignWhen cre­at­ing a new cam­paign there are a few items to consider:

Cam­paign Name:

This should be a unique name that is con­tex­tual to the specifics of the cam­paign but also to the scope.  I have seen one of our cus­tomers using the nam­ing con­ven­tion of  “Global || Cam­paign Name” for a multi-channel cam­paign or “Social || Cam­paign Name” for cam­paigns and engage­ment that is strictly social.  You can use what­ever con­ven­tion you wish here, but the more details, the eas­ier it is to cre­ate clas­si­fi­ca­tions and search fil­ters to find what you need.

Time Frame:

Many cam­paigns have a start and end date.  By enter­ing this here, it will help as we are visu­ally cor­re­lat­ing social data with ana­lyt­ics data.  It will also help to show only rel­e­vant and active cam­paigns in the report­ing inter­face, keep­ing your dash­boards clean and usable.

Key Suc­cess Met­ric (KPI):

If your cam­paign does not have a suc­cess met­ric such as orders, vis­its, or some­thing mean­ing­ful, you may want to reeval­u­ate your strat­egy to some degree.  In addi­tion to aware­ness of our Run­ning Shoes, I also want to influ­ence orders and rev­enue.  In this case I will select rev­enue, but I can select any of the dig­i­tal met­rics that we are col­lect­ing in Adobe Ana­lyt­ics.  If you still feel that this is just not applic­a­ble to this par­tic­u­lar cam­paign, then I would just select instances as the default metric.

Cam­paign Image:

Who was it that decided that ALL report­ing inter­faces had to be bor­ing pie charts and line graphs?  Adding an image not only helps with con­tex­tu­ally iden­ti­fy­ing the cam­paign in a long list of sim­i­lar cam­paigns, but will also be used in data visu­al­iza­tions. For example:


Cam­paign Prefix:

Let’s say that dur­ing the Run­ning Shoe cam­paign meet­ings, it was decided upon that all related cam­paigns will have a code pre­fix of ‘run­ning’ and then the chan­nel spe­cific ID.  We can cus­tomize that from here.  The default pre­fix is ‘social’, but for this exam­ple, I can change it to ‘running_social’.  That way all of my data will be orga­nized as the ana­lysts are expect­ing it and social will get the appro­pri­ate credit for influ­enc­ing success.

Con­nect­ing the Dots Between Social Inter­ac­tions and Mean­ing­ful Busi­ness Results:

Once we have the cam­paign in place, I can now start cre­at­ing con­tent within Adobe Social and start spread­ing the word about our new prod­uct line and link them to our land­ing and prod­uct pages.

By select­ing the cam­paign dur­ing the con­tent cre­ation work­flow we are ensur­ing that all social inter­ac­tion data as well as down­stream con­ver­sion data is allo­cated in the appro­pri­ate place:



What you can’t see here is that Adobe Social has auto­mat­i­cally appended a cam­paign code to the end of this link which will allow us to mea­sure con­ver­sion suc­cess­fully.  So lets have a look at the cam­paign report:


Not only can we see indi­vid­ual post per­for­mance in the Cam­paign Time­line, but we can also see a break­down of con­ver­sion by Link and Post Type which helps us bench­mark which spe­cific ele­ments of our cam­paign are per­form­ing the best and lever­age those insights for future con­tent and campaigns.

Using cam­paigns in this way will help you effec­tively orga­nize your social mar­ket­ing efforts and start to con­nect the dots between social inter­ac­tions and real busi­ness results.  Be sure to let me know how you are using the cam­paign func­tion­al­ity in Adobe Social or how you go about quan­ti­fy­ing the value of your social mar­ket­ing programs.