Lindsay Hutter 318x318 v2While there are dozens of stats in DMA’s just-released 2016 Statistical Factbook (SFB) that make this point, it only takes one. Fewer than one-third of companies are collecting data from social media. Just 29% to be exact.

Juxtapose that stat with another from the SFB: marketing spend on social media is projected to more than double over the next 5 years, jumping it from 10.7% of marketing budgets today to 23.8% in 2021.

The forecasted climb of social media marketing budgets is warranted when you consider that two-thirds of all Americans are on some form of social media, with nearly a third of Americans checking social media several times a day. Even more so, it’s imperative when factoring in that five out of six millennials connect with companies on social networks.

However, in light of the low percentages of companies collecting data on their social spend, it’s cause for raised eyebrows among CEOs and CFOs.

Even among the 29% collecting data on their social media spend, most are less than confident about their effectiveness in analyzing it strategically and making adjustments that net greater ROI. Sixty-six percent say it’s increasing marginally – at best.

With most marketers soon to be preparing and shortly thereafter defending their 2017 marketing budgets, it’s not too soon to game up on social media data collection and analytics.

DMA member and Fact Book contributor Mark Ogne, EVP Partner Marketing at Demand Metric and Advisor to NewzSocial, points to five steps to improve your social media marketing:

  • Attune your social 100% to your organizational content strategy. The development process should run parallel across all marketing and communications channels.
  • Don’t just share press releases and marketing offers, share on-message 3rd-party content that can tie back to your brand and message.
  • Find measurement that work for you and stick to it. Use that as a baseline to improve and go deeper over time.
  • Encourage the socially active within the organization, don’t shun them. Bring them into coordination to engage and share their expertise.
  • Engage senior leadership in social media. From the top down, if senior leadership understands the value, you’ll find more willing partners to enlist and enable wider coordination.

SFB2016-CoverFor more insights and data points to drive the value of your social media spend and results, secure your copy of the 2016 Statistical Fact Book today! The SFB, long known as the “Definitive Source of Marketing Benchmarks”, contains 326 pages and 379 charts organized by channel as well as insight reports and perspectives from the leading companies in marketing.