Do Follower Counts Matter?

You aren’t alone if you find it more difficult to gain social followers today than a few years ago. Competition for the consumer’s time and attention is increasing, with more and better content available to choose from. Does your follower count matter though?

What matters?

To improve your social media performance, you must first of all measure key metrics. Which key metrics to use depends on which goals you are trying to achieve with your social channels.

  • Engagement – Likes, Comments, Shares, Clicks One of the best ways to judge whether your consumers and followers are consuming your content is to look at the engagement metrics. This can be measured in likes, comments, shares and clicks. Engagement metrics like these tell us how many people are actually interacting with the content rather than passively scrolling through it.

  • Awareness – Impressions, Reach If increasing awareness is the main goal it will be useful to also throw impressions and reach into the mix in order to see the number of people who saw the content. This will be useful if trying to increase brand awareness.

  • ROI – Referrals, Conversions The return on investment can be measured by looking at referrals or conversions in order to judge whether social media effectively influenced a sale. This is easier to measure for companies which operate in e-commerce than a typical B2B interaction, since the latter often involves a longer process of influence and can be hard to track back to social.

Followers don’t matter.

There are evidently many different social media metrics that can be used for different purposes. Following count has not been mentioned so far though, which might be surprising since this is what people like talking about. We believe that there are multiple other metrics that matter much more than followers, as the number of followers doesn’t always translate to higher engagement or awareness.

There are examples of companies trying to apply a quick fix to their social media engagement by purchasing followers. This might give the impression of having a large audience who sees your content, however if your followers aren’t real or care about the content it won’t help your social performance.

Building a smaller number of dedicated followers is far more effective than having a large number of inactive followers who don’t care about your content.

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