Yes! Vanity Metrics DO Matter. There! I said it. It’s out there, just like toothpaste out of a tube sticking to the bathroom counter and I can’t take it back. Oh and it’s uncomfortable and a little messy…just like a glob of toothpaste sitting on the counter. But, guess what?!? I am glad about it! I have been wanting to say no…I take that back, scream this out loud for SOOOOOOOOOO long and I finally got the guts to do it. I bet you are a little glad too. Because in the back of your mind, despite what all they experts say, you believe there may be a place for vanity metrics. Me too! I’m here for you sis! And guys! I’ve got your back so let’s dive into what you need to know about vanity metrics and why they are SO important.
Let’s Dive In
Discussing the “good” of vanity metrics is pretty much a taboo topic among social media metrics. Some experts say you should ignore them. In fact, those who say they ignore their vanity metrics wear that like a badge of honor. And I disagree with that.
If you’re not familiar with vanity metrics, they are numbers of followers and likes someone has on social media. In a nutshell, vanity metrics can be how many likes someone’s Facebook page has, or how many followers someone has on Instagram, or email subscribers, or how many people liked or commented on a specific post.
One of the major reasons why people don’t like vanity metrics is because they can be easily manipulated mostly through the purchase of likes. Plus, they are also the audience’s “easy button.” All it costs them is a double tap on a post – they aren’t spending a lot of time investing in the post or the account. Because of those two reasons, people discount or don’t put much weight on vanity metrics.
But here are 3 reasons why I think vanity metrics are important, especially if you are not manipulating the system, using them correctly and with a critical eye.
- It gives you a good barometer of how you are doing as a content creator
- While there are analytics that dive deeper into how a post is performing, the initial “like” count can give you a quick snapshot of how your content is performing against other posts in your feed
- When you get a lot of likes on one post compared to another – it means you’ve hit on something and you should be producing more of that type of content
- They can give you raw information if you are testing a new strategy, concept, product or service
- They can be a good diagnostic for account growth – it’s important to be constantly growing your account – if you aren’t growing…you’re dying.
- But, you must be growing for the right reasons.
- Your goal should be creating content and using strategies to help you attract your ideal customer and clients – not just any warm body
Someone once asked me, “What’s a good amount of people to have follow you?” I sat and thought about that one for a minute. I could have told her the industry standard response which is “it doesn’t matter, if you have one follower you have influence!” But that one follower may never buy from you or that one follower could be your mom who is there cheering you along the way. Instead, I told her to look at her competition and see what their follower count is and set a goal that’s right for you and your company. Once you see what your competition looks like, you know what’s possible or what you can do for your business to meet the goals you have set for your company.
Overall, I think vanity metrics can be a good, quick indicator as to whether things are going right or if something is a little off. They can also allow for you to pivot quickly if need be. BUT, they should not be the only thing you look at to get a clear picture of your social media accounts. Don’t ignore them, but use them as a tool.