The Hidden Value of Social Media

Posted on: May 5, 2023 | Written by: Natalie Henley

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Organic social media marketing can be a flashy/shiny object to companies. Brands start tossing time/money/resources into it, almost hoping that something positive will happen from all that effort.

We call that the “post and pray” method.

Or they barrel into organic social media, thinking it should be approached like any other direct response channel.

We call that generally a bad idea.

Examples of things I’ve heard company decision-makers say (any of these sound familiar?)

  • We’ve got to be on TikTok; it’s exploding right now!
  • Social media feels like a marketing tax we have to pay – it doesn’t do anything for us, but it’s required
  • Our expectation is for Instagram posts to drive leads
  • Why aren’t we doing the XYZ tactic?!?…our competitor is doing it!
  • Let’s try to make something go viral.

Then, fast forward six months, that same decision maker looks at a channel report in Analytics and starts panicking, seeing that social media appears to be driving little traffic or sales/leads.

At the risk of oversimplifying things, the issue is the lack of an appropriate “why are we doing this” underneath and, most of the time, the proper measurement, KPIs & vision of what success looks like.

But, it’s easy to see how we got here – as an industry, we’ve taught ourselves, and clients that evaluating digital comes down to simple to a channel report – did the channel drive website traffic, and did that traffic immediately create a conversion for us?

But – social media is ALOT more than a last-click attribution Google Analytics report. Are you noticing that branded search is going up? Or are you observing your traffic clicking your social media icons to vet you when they come to your site? Is the traffic in the mysterious “Direct” or “unassigned” categories inexplicably growing? Is your messaging across the board resonating better and getting you better conversion rates & clicks through? Are you earning more links for content that is boosting your SEO rankings?

These metrics can indicate a healthy, successful social media program supporting your overall digital marketing metrics.


How Brand Awareness Affects the Bottom Line


Brand Awareness


Intrinsically, we know increasing positive brand awareness is good…but why? Overall, brand awareness leads to a lot of really good things, including (1) a bigger pool of potential customers, (2) opening the door to new partnerships & opportunities (3) helping you build long-term brand value.

We know how to measure brand awareness on social media through things like Reach, Impressions, Engagement, Followers, etc. But how can you tell if that brand awareness positively affects your bottom line? Here are some additional metrics to start considering:

  • Increases in branded search (can be measured in both SEO & Paid)
  • Earned links for key content
    • Leading to increased SEO rankings in that keyword category, leading to increased traffic & conversions in organic search.
  • Increased email signups
    • Leading to email conversions
  • Increased partnership or distributor opportunities
  • Increased brand valuation


Other Key Areas Social Builds Value

Customer Loyalty


Customer Loyalty


Loyal customers are likelier to repeat purchases, recommend your brand to others, and provide valuable feedback. While email is usually the fan favorite among brands for customer loyalty programs, social media can be a vital tool for building loyalty, especially for extracting public testimonials from brand enthusiasts + connecting with brand advocates who might have purchased on third-party websites and; therefore, you don’t have their email address.

Market Research


Market Research


The value social can provide in helping you identify trends and customer needs and testing messaging strategies is hard to understate. This information can be used to develop better products and services, ultimately increasing customer satisfaction and driving sales.

Employee Engagement


Employee Engagement


Let’s remember the people who keep the wheels turning in your organization. Engaged employees are more productive, committed, and likely to stay with your company longer. Social media can showcase your company culture, celebrate employee achievements, and encourage internal communication. This not only helps with talent acquisition but also creates a sense of pride and camaraderie among your workforce, which can positively impact your business’s overall performance.

Crisis Management




In the age of lightning-fast information sharing, social media has become a critical tool for crisis management. Being active on social media allows companies to quickly address any negative publicity or potential crises, helping to protect their reputation and minimize damage. By promptly responding to issues and providing transparent information, your brand can demonstrate its commitment to customer satisfaction and maintain trust. This can help safeguard your company’s bottom line by preventing long-lasting damage to your brand image and customer relationships.

In short, while analytics reports may give you insights into referral traffic and conversions, there’s much more to the social media story than meets the eye.

Need a Little Help From Your Friends?

Yes, we’re a social media agency & yes, we can help with this. Could you use a helping hand in aligning your social media with the value your organization needs? We got you; reach out here to get the conversation started.


About the author:

Every digital marketing agency has a sales pitch: you hear all about their capabilities, their technologies, and how incredible the results will be if you select their agency.  But selecting an agency based on features is similar to marrying someone because you swiped right… there’s a lot more than features when it comes to finding the right agency relationship. Of course, Volume Nine knows how to tactically build campaigns that work, write engaging and targeted blog posts, optimize websites for search, and manage social media like a boss. We have done those things for hundreds of clients — from Fortune 100 companies down to a friend’s first business. The real difference, though, is that we know the craft of digital marketing inside and out. We know how to develop the right concoction of tactics, tools, and techniques that help you meet (and exceed) your goals… on a budget that is just right for you.  

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