It’s tempting to think that your job as a content creator ends as soon as you post the content your client asked for. You take a screenshot and send it to your client as a way of saying you’ve fulfilled your end of the bargain. Why would they need metrics? They were the ones who tapped you for the job, in the first place. Why should you tell them about your performance?
The answer to that question is simple: If you want to make a business of co-creating content with brands, you need to prove that your services help them reach their goals. When GetCRAFT spoke with brands about their experience in doing native ads such as sponsored content, they identified measuring return on investment one of the crucial issues.
That means your refusal to share metrics might make brands think twice before working with you again. Some marketers, in fact, view sponsored content as performance marketing: They pay only for the what they get in terms of their objectives. Some clients who target reach for example, would require bloggers to post social media ads to get the numbers.
This is also why at GetCRAFT, we ask influencers and publishers in our marketplace to input guaranteed views. We want to make sure that our campaigns deliver results. Here are some ways for you to measure and report campaign metrics:
Marketers GetCRAFT surveyed said most of their native advertising campaigns are meant to generate brand awareness. When it comes to blogs, for example, they go for metrics such as pageviews using Google Analytics, which give them an idea about the number of times an article has been seen. Pageviews and unique pageviews are not the same: Multiple pageviews by the same user in the same session count as one unique pageview
When it comes to YouTube, you can track the number of legitimate views for your channels or videos using YouTube Analytics. You might want to hold off on reporting YouTube metrics, however, until around a day after uploading, to get updated figures. Metrics in the first few hours after a video has been posted “might not yet show all legitimate views at that time,” YouTube explains. “After quality views are counted, view count updates more frequently.”
Metrics can be tricky on Instagram. If you’re using a regular account, there’s no way for you to measure actual unique views. Our experience at GetCRAFT has taught us that every Instagram photo post is seen by at least 10% of your total number of followers. We arrived at this estimate using historical data from Instagram business profiles that we’ve monitored.
We recommend, however, that you start using a business profile on Instagram to better measure your content’s performance. This gives you access not only to insights on individual posts but also tells you how users interact with your profile. Views correspond to reach on your insights panel if you’re using a business profile. Besides reach, Instagram also shows you engagement, or the number of accounts that like, comment or save your post.
Measuring performance is more straightforward when it comes to videos. Whether using a regular or business profile, Instagram gives you a number for views when you check your video post. Using a business profile, you can also access an insights panel that gives you metrics such as impressions, reach and engagement. What’s great about a business profile is that if you promote a post, you can also track reach for the original post and promoted post separately.
Like Instagram stories that disappear after 24 hours, stories insights also have an expiry period: They’re only available until 14 days after you’ve published a story. That means you should keep a record of your stories metrics before they disappear.
On Facebook, you can easily check the reach of your Facebook posts on the insights panel. The platform even distinguishes between organic reach or unique users who have seen your posts through unpaid distribution, and paid reach or those who have seen your paid Facebook posts. Your Facebook insights panel also shows you engagement metrics including the number of times users clicked on your post or reactions, comments and shares.
Regardless of your arrangement with the client, it’s good practice to measure the performance of any of your sponsored posts. Doing so helps you better develop your audience by allowing you to identify the type, voice or tone of content that appeals to them. You repeat what works and tweak what doesn’t. By being mindful of metrics, you also position yourself as a more effective marketing partner and not just a channel for putting out content.
You can take metrics measurement further by tracking actions taken by your audience. If the client’s objective is to drive traffic to a landing page, you can track clicks to the link using tools such as bitly or the Google URL shortener to see the number of times that the links have been clicked.