Lead Generating Advertising on Social Networks: KPI Considerations

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Lead Generating Advertising on Social Networks: KPI Considerations

Post by Anne McCarthy, Associate Media Manager

Social media presence across various platforms is valuable for every brand. Each social network has its own unique benefits and opportunities and should be treated independently. What works on Facebook might not work on LinkedIn or Twitter, and vice versa. The most innovative and effective brands leverage a mix of social platforms to achieve their objectives. The main objectives for social advertising typically include driving visibility and leads while generating engagement.

In a lead generating social campaign, there are two essential metrics:

(1) Number of people who clicked and interacted with the ad

(2) Number of people who generated leads; conversion rate

Cost-Per-Engagement (CPE) Metric: This metric is the average cost per user engagement. “Engagements” include clicks on media (videos, Vines, GIFs, images, etc.), comments, likes, views shares, etc.

Cost-Per-Lead (CPL) Metric: This metric is the average cost per lead generated. “Leads” may include filling out a form, making a phone call, etc.

Social Platform Effectiveness

In working to deliver a profitable return on investment, it is important to look at the effectiveness and targeting features of each social platform.


Twitter allows advertisers to target specific groups of people (e.g. similar to your follower base, etc.) It has the ability to reach 700 million consumers and allow brands to target consumers based on who they follow, their location, gender, language and interests. Additionally, brands can leverage key features that are not available through other platforms:

  • Keyword targeting: allows brands to connect with users based on their recent searches within the platform
  • Tailored audiences: brands have the opportunity to target custom groups of users
  • Device targeting: brands can target consumers based on the device they use to access to Twitter
  • Handle targeting: brands can target users based on who they follow


Like Twitter, Facebook allows targeting audiences based on location, language, age and other common demographics. Facebook has the ability to target nearly one billion daily users based on their various interests. For example, those who love camping or people who own a truck (or both). Additionally, Facebook allows brands to leverage features that other platforms don’t currently offer:

  • Partner targeting: allows brands to reach consumers based on offline behaviors
  • Targeting connections: gives brands the opportunity to target consumers who like their page, and “friends” of those who like the branded page
  • Lookalike audiences: allows brands to find consumers who are similar to their current (and best) customers.


LinkedIn targeting is best for targeting employees and companies. Advertisers can specify an audience based on the industry they work in, their position and seniority in the workplace, how big their employer is (post targeting enterprises), etc. Because of this, LinkedIn is extremely effective for B2B marketing.


The primary intent of social ads is to generate awareness and engagement to a highly targeted audience which typically results in a long term lift in conversions and leads. The secondary intent of social ads is to drive on-site actions from visitors, however these tend to be few in volume. Twitter and Facebook tend to have low cost visibility and high cost last-click leads while LinkedIn has high cost visibility and lower cost leads. As a result, leads are expected to have an average cost compared to engagements, however both are signaling value and return to the social advertising investment.

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