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Setting realistic objectives is key to social media success.

Defining what you want to achieve will allow you to formulate a plan to make your strategy a reality.

The objectives you set will depend on the existing level of awareness that the user has of your brand and where they sit within the sales funnel for the product or service you wish to promote. 

What Is Your Sales Funnel?

Your sales funnel is the journey your customer takes from initial awareness of a product or service to the final purchase. 

The purpose is to convert potential customers into paying customers by guiding them through a series of stages, each designed to bring them closer to making a purchase.

Whilst the objectives will not always map directly to a part of the sales funnel; you should consider the different stages of the sales funnel when setting your objectives. 

Sales funnel to be used when setting your social media objectives

Choosing Social Media Objectives

Choose 2-5 social media objectives that match your overall marketing strategy and will contribute to the awareness, trust, reputation and position in the sales funnel of your business.

Increasing Brand Awareness

Building awareness of your business and what you offer to a wider audience to improve brand recognition, reputation and recall. This is naturally at the top of the sales funnel.

When to use this objective

When you want a group of people with specific interests or demographics to be aware of your product or service, e.g. a new restaurant may focus on generating local brand awareness.

Drive website traffic

Use social media to drive more traffic to a specific product, service or information page on your website. 

By driving people to your website, you can educate, capture and retarget potential customers and drive them through the different parts of your sales funnel.

When to use this objective

This objective can be used at any stage of the funnel and is a universal social media objective covering awareness, consideration, decision and conversion.

Engagement – with current & potential customers

Interact with and respond to customers in a way that builds relationships and fosters loyalty.

Engagement is a step up from brand awareness in that it is designed to build a deeper connection with your target audience, adding depth to the relationship, ready for when the user is ready to buy.

Engagement is found in the awareness and consideration sections of the sales funnel.

When to use this objective

When you sell a product or service where trust and reputation are key to the sales process

Build community

Use social media to create a sense of community and connection among customers, fans, or followers. 

This can be achieved using your business pages and particularly groups where you can bring together groups of people with shared interests or experiences.

This is a great objective for the top of the funnel at the awareness and consideration stages. 

When to use this objective

When you have a community of passionate people with shared interests, experiences or purpose. It can also be used post-sale to keep customers engaged.

Generate leads

To attract potential customers and capture their contact information for future marketing campaigns.

This can be leads at the consideration phase, or further down the funnel at the decision stage to arrange demonstrations, quotes or sales meetings.

Lead generation can be used in different ways across the consideration, decision and conversion objectives.

When to use this objective

To sign up cold audiences to your lead magnet, to push warmer audiences to take the next step in your sales funnel.

*spoiler alert* 

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Increase Sales

Using social media to promote products or services and drive sales.

Whilst this is the end goal for all marketing efforts, it can often be difficult to track and measure the impact of social media on sales due to the combined role of the other objectives.

This combined with the ongoing challenge of generating organic reach on sales focused organic content make this a challenging objective to work towards.

We advise that you only set this objective as a secondary to the other marketing objectives or when combined with significant investment in paid social advertising to drive focused traffic to warm (retargeted) audiences.

Other Social Media Objectives To Consider

Improve customer service

Using social media to resolve customer issues and improve the overall customer experience. 

Large organisations have teams of social media customer service reps that monitor social media to identify and resolve customer issues. 

It is often quicker to use social media than traditional communication such as phone, letter or email.

Influence purchasing decisions

Using social media and particularly paid ads to influence the purchasing decisions of potential customers.

Develop customer loyalty 

Using social media to build long-term relationships with customers and keep you top of mind to maximise the amount of business they generate.