Using Metrics to Keep Social Media Fresh At Sun Life

christina_austin    November 14, 2017

Sun Life Financial runs many social media campaigns and uses many different methods to track their efficacy with social media metrics. The purposes of their campaigns ranges from creating brand awareness, having people consider one of Sun Life’s products or services, or conversion. Conversion would mean that a client has taken an action such as: set up a meeting with an advisor or downloaded an app. (A. Guselle, personal communication, November 13, 2017) By using the tools at their disposal, such as the analytics that are available within the social media platforms, Sun Life is able to demonstrate how the social media team is reaching their goals.

Sun Life’s social media campaigns are mostly paid media campaigns, which can be tracked through the cost per social action. For awareness campaigns they metric would be CPM (cost per 1000 impressions), and for conversion level campaigns they use the CPL (cost per lead) metric. (A. Guselle, personal communication, November 13, 2017). These hard numbers are much easier to explain to leadership within a company because there is a clear benefit from the social media campaign.

It is much more difficult to monitor more fluid ideas like sentiment. Sun Life uses a social listening tool to keep an eye on what customers are saying about Sun Life on social media. This also helps them have a different point of reference if there are possible customer services issues brewing.

There are some fairly robust analytics tools right within the social media channels themselves, which is what Sun Life utilizes for some of their metrics. Twitter provides details about the number of impressions a tweet receives as well as engagement, which would mean a click, a retweet, or a like.

Hootsuite is a social media aggregator that is used by the Sun Life social media team. With this tool, the team is able to monitor all the social platforms they use with an easy to use dashboard that can be customized for their use.

Through these methods of monitoring how social media campaigns are going, the team is able to determine if a campaign needs to be changed. Throughout the year, Sun Life runs campaigns to connect customers with their advisors. Alex Guselle, the manager of the Sun Life social media team, finds that the CPL often starts to rise after a couple of months of ads running. She notes that, “When we see this it’s usually an indicator that we need swap in fresh creative or change the lead-in.” (A. Guselle, personal communication, November 13, 2017)

Lessons for Others

There are useful metrics built right into social media platforms and it is important to utilize those in addition to the more robust enterprise tools that available.

Social media is a useful advertising medium but it is important to keep things fresh. When the metrics show that the campaign is getting tired, it is time to freshen up the artwork used if you want to keep the same message, or it is time to start over with a completely fresh ad.


Organization: Sun Life Financial
Industry: Financial Services
Name of Organization Contact: Alex Guselle

Authored by: Christina Austin

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


Sun Life Financial Home Page. Sun Life Financial. Retrieved November 13, 2017, from

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Marin, John. (2015, October 9). Top Metrics for Online Paid Ad Campaigns. WebStrategies. Retrieved November 13, 2017, from

Byrne, Shannon. (2016, June 6). How to Set and Track Metrics for Your Paid Social Campaign. Geckoboard. Retrieved November 13, 2017, from