Vanity Metrics: What Are They and Do They Matter?
If you consume any type of educational content in the social media marketing space, you’ve probably heard the term “vanity metrics” being thrown around. But... What exactly are vanity metrics? Should you be paying attention to them, or should you ignore them?
Let's dive right into it!
What are vanity metrics?
Simply put, vanity metrics are statistics in your social media marketing that *technically* do nothing to help you achieve your marketing goals. They only make you feel and look like you’re winning.
An example of vanity metrics for most accounts (but not all!) are "likes". While post likes may feel like it means that people like your content, it doesn’t mean that people really see you.
Post likes don't tell you if an individual has actually read your post. If they have taken an action on your post. Or if your media has resonated with them.
Having many likes doesn’t mean that your audience is engaged and taking any action that you’re asking them to take. Hence, why they’re often considered to be vanity metrics!
So, are vanity metrics important?
Well… Yes and no. You need to look at ALL of your data (because why wouldn’t you?), but most importantly, you should be looking and focusing on improving your key performance indicators (KPIs). These key performance indicators are a better way for you to measure your strategy and make sure you’re getting closer to your goals.
How do I determine what my vanity metrics are?
It’s pretty simple: any metrics that don’t tell you anything about whether or not your audience is responding to your CTA and engaging with you is a vanity metric. Basically, determine what your KPIs are, and anything that isn’t a KPI, is a vanity metric!
Classic vanity metric examples include post likes, page followers, page views, and subscribers. When you have high numbers of these metrics, they make you look darn good on paper! But do they tell you anything of value? Ehhh, not really. But at least you're still a total babe!
Does everyone have the same vanity metrics?
Believe it or not… We don’t ALL have the same vanity metrics. And that’s because you may not have the same goals and objectives on social media as other brands. Therefore, the metrics that you would toss aside would maybe be an important KPI for another brand.
That being said, here’s a little tip…
Don’t compare yourself to other brands based on the vanity metrics you can see! Because chances are, they aren’t really looking at those metrics themselves. Focus on the good stuff -- YOUR KPIs!
If you need any help identifying your KPIs, make sure to shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll be glad to help!