Engagement measuring

Early on the in the life of the “social web” – back in the barely remembered past of 2005 and such – there was lots of talk about engagement being a metric that marketers had to be paying attention to. But just how that was defined was fuzzy and everyone seemed to have a different idea of what it meant, with many of those personal definitions being the ones that fit their particular program best.

A new study from the Society of Digital Agencies has identified what seem to be the most important engagement-oriented metrics. As usual, these need to be presented with the caveat that they seem more focused on advertising and marketing campaigns and less on those that make use of social media efforts that are geared toward conversation.

So, to bounce off my above point, there are a bunch of additional things that can be included under the heading of engagement that are more appropriate to social media-focused campaigns.

  • Comments/Trackbacks: A strategy of writing posts that encourage reader feedback can move the needle on how many comments a post receives and how many times the blog as a whole or a individual post are linked back to.
  • RSS Subscribers: Subscribing to an RSS feed requires action and, even if that’s all they do, shows a level of engagement with the blog/brand since it shows they’re interested in continued reading. RSS click-throughs is also important here as it shows readers who then want to see, to some extent, if there’s a conversation happening in the comments that they need to participate in.
  • Average Page Views/Visit: The graph above does include Time on Site, which is related to this one but there are differences. Average page views per visit shows directly how effective your content is at drawing in readers to the other stuff you’re writing. One good post is fine…but this metric shows if that’s a consistent thing or a fluke.

Those are just a few ideas but I’d be curious to hear if there are ones I’m forgetting or haven’t thought of.