Employee Advocacy Metrics That Matter [Cheat Sheet]

Your CMO walks by you in the hallway and asks, “So, how’s the employee advocacy program going?”

“It’s going great!” you respond. “One of our employees got 78 retweets on his first tweet!”

“That’s fantastic! How many new leads have we generated thanks to our advocates?”

“Uhh…” you stammer. “A lot?”

Shoot. You can rattle off how many retweets and likes your employees are getting. But you have no clue how many leads you have.

Sound familiar? You’re not alone. 60% of marketers struggle to show the ROI of their social media efforts, and it’s time to fix this problem.

Choosing the Metrics That Matter

Since marketers can measure a lot of things, they have to decide which metrics matter. Every marketer has an opinion about which numbers are important, and some marketers even get into heated debates over their opinions.

But here’s the thing: Instead of arguing about which metrics matter, modern marketers should ask themselves, To whom does this metric matter?

Not everyone in your marketing organization – let alone your company – cares about the same numbers. It’s the job of modern marketers to tailor their reports and to use the right numbers, in the right context. Let’s take a look at some concrete examples below.

When Tactical Metrics Matter

Many employee advocacy platforms provide you with tactical metrics. They help you understand how many people clicked on a link, or how many people your advocates reached, or how many people retweeted a tweet.

Tactical measurements are great for:

  • Your advocates, who want to increase their visibility on social channels.
  • Your curators, who want to ensure that their content selections are resonating with the right audiences.
  • Your trainers and program managers, who are trying to standardize best practices for your advocates.

To be sure, tactical metrics are especially important at the beginning of an employee advocacy program, when you’re trying to establish best practices. If people aren’t clicking on your advocates’ links when you have 50 advocates, you might want to rethink your approach to social sharing before you enlist 100 advocates. Perhaps you need different content or snazzier headlines.

When Revenue Metrics Matter

That said, while tactical metrics have value, they have their limits, as well.

CMOs and other executives aren’t interested in tactical measurements. (That’s why some marketers refer to tactical metrics as “vanity metrics.”) CMOs want more strategic metrics – ones that can be mapped onto the sales funnel and be assigned dollar values.

For example, you might want to track:

  • How many new leads were generated because of your employee advocacy efforts.
  • How much pipeline was influenced by your advocates.
  • How many of those opportunities closed.
  • How much revenue was generated as a result.

Revenue-based metrics are what matter to your CMO, and ultimately, these are the metrics that will justify your advocacy expenses to your company’s executive team.

Unfortunately, revenue-related numbers happen to be the numbers that many employee advocacy vendors ignore. As a result, many program managers have trouble justifying their advocacy programs to their CMOs. Try not to let this happen to you.

Bottom Line

Here’s the bottom line: Find an employee advocacy platform that can help you measure tactical metrics and revenue metrics. Both types of numbers are important.

So, as you’re evaluting employee advocacy solutions, remember that your advocates in engineering typically aren’t thinking about leads, but getting retweets and starting conversations are important to them. In other words, your engineers care about tactical metrics.

At the same time, you don’t want to look foolish when your CMO asks you about leads, pipeline, and deals. So, be sure to give your executives revenue-based metrics for your employee advocacy program.

If you want more help demonstrating the ROI of your employee advocacy program, contact us. We’d be happy to help.

Until next time,


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