The Key to Social Media Metrics

Tracey Pearce-Dawson    November 4, 2014


Organization: TOMS Shoes

Industry: Retail

Which stats matter; social media metrics that your business should track; social data metrics you can trust…the list goes on.

When it comes to tracking social media the options can be overwhelming. So, how do organizations determine what’s best for their own social media metrics?

As Marketing Communications Specialist Nicole Brophy shares, the options for social media today are many, and they’re constantly evolving.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that one needs to use all social media platforms, but the ones you do decide to use should be tracked to measure their effectiveness. Take TOMS® Shoes for example.

If you’re not familiar with TOMS  you should be. Created by Blake Mycoskie, TOMS not only produces shoes, but matches every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need. It’s called the One for One program. To date they’ve given 35 million shoes to children in need.

On an annual basis the company holds a “One Day Without Shoes” campaign – aimed at showing the impact a pair of shoes can have on a child’s life. Social media plays a large role in the campaign, inviting supporters to tweet the experience using the #withoutshoes hashtag. To help build awareness about the campaign, TOMS partnered with AOL for promotional support.

Following supporters’ tweets was a critical element in determining campaign success.


By analyzing the content of the tweets and what was being retweeted, campaign managers were able to learn which messages resonated most strongly and which participants had the biggest impact on the campaign – which they were able to leverage.

Through AOL’s promotion of #withoutshoes TOMS had a potential reach of more than one million people – a true social media metric success story.

Lessons Learned:

  • The return on investment factor for social media is dependent upon a campaign’s goals.
  • Organizations and businesses should carefully consider which social media works best for their respective industries or areas of specialty.
  • Utilize tools such as Google Analytics and gain an understanding of realistic benchmarks when using social media.

Web References:

Simply Measured


Submitted by: Tracey Pearce-Dawson, SMBP student, University of Waterloo

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If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site please send your comments to Peter Carr, Programme Director, Social Media for Business Performance.