Don’t Fall Prey to Vanity Metrics

It’s surprising how many B2B business owners and marketing managers get caught up in the wrong social media metrics. 

And, you might be one of them. Here’s how to know…. Do you get hyper focused on a few of the public facing analytics – the number of “likes” and followers your social accounts have? Do you only look at your profile pages to judge the success of your company’s social media efforts?

If your answer is even a slight ‘yes’, then you might be spending too much time on vanity metrics.

Vanity metrics are the metrics that make you look good to others but do not help you understand your own performance in a way that informs future strategies.

Vanity metrics can be important. They are certainly important to large consumer brands (like Starbucks) and Instagram Influencers, but they do not hold much weight in B2B marketing.

We won’t say to never look at your social media account followers or post likes, but there is so much more depth in other social media analytics than in vanity metrics. Understanding the analytics that matter will help you better judge the success of your social media efforts.


Here are the 5 B2B social media metrics that matter:

  • Impressions – the total number of people who had the opportunity to see your content in their News Feeds.
  • Clicks – the number of times people clicked on your content to engage with it.
  • Outbound Clicks – the number of times people clicked to a blog or landing page.
  • Engagement Rate – the total number of engagements divided by the total number of impressions.
  • Leads – the number of new contacts, forms submissions, downloads, etc.


Focusing your social media efforts around these five metrics will help you to see past the vanity of social media and into the true power that social media provides for your company.

For example, would you rather have your Twitter post receive 1,000 likes…

  • A high number of post likes (Vanity Metrics)
  • No opportunity for people to learn more


…or 1,000 post clicks to your website?


  • A low number of post likes (Vanity Metrics)
  • High probability for link clicks and new leads; in this case 14-day free trials


My guess, 1,000 clicks to your website is much more valuable. That’s 1,000 potential new people to your website who took the opportunity to gain further access to your content or learn more about your products/services. And, if you have an inbound marketing strategy, that’s a HUGE opportunity to get those 1,000 people into your sales funnel.

Don’t get overwhelmed with this list of metrics. There are easy and simple ways to measure them. There is no shortage of services that help, at Katie L Smith & Company we use Traject Social.