5 key metrics in conversation management

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There are probably one hundred possible metrics that you can use in conversation management. Going from Klout scores, number of followers, number of retweets, fans on Facebook to number of sales leads and sales.
There are 5 key metrics that we like to use:

1. Volume: how people are talking about your brand and how many people are readings/hearing about your brand. A small action can lead to huge impact in these social media times. Think of the Harry Potter example, where the 7 key influencers of Harry Potter reached out to 350 million (!) people to tell them about the new theme park in Universal studios Orlando. Reach remains an important element of conversations.

2. Sentiment: are people speaking in a positive, neutral or negative way about your company. Setting clear targets on your sentiment score helps you to be more serious about engaging with your consumers.

3. Impact:are the conversations changing the opinion of others. Our research showed that a large majority of the conversations are what we call ‘bonding’ conversations: high volume, positive sentiment but low influence. Typical example is the soccer industry. Fans often talk very positive about their favorite team, but it is almost impossible to convert someone to become a fan of your team.

4. NPS: a classic one, I know, but still a very valuable one. Are people actively recommending you. A positive NPS leads to higher growth, so this should be one of our attention points. Question here is: how can we make the neutral ones (7 & 8 on the scale) delighted. How can we activate them. Our research has shown that 28% of the clients of an average company are delighted about the service (score 9 or 10) but don’t recommend this company. I call this the pot of gold, activate them boosts your business.

5. Leads: and finally, it is important to measure the number of leads you receive from everything that you do. Define leads upfront and see how many you will receive. A lead can be defined as a specific action: asking a request for proposal, participating in a game, register on your website… Choose something tangible to measure the sales potential of your conversations.

Manage them proactive, not reactive

Metrics are often used in the wrong way: reactive. Let’s do something and then look at the results. The trick is to use these 5 metrics in a proactive way to set goals. I hate ROI discussions that come afterwards and there were no real goals set up front. How can you know if there is ROI if you didn’t agree about the R and the I upfront.