The Effectiveness Rate hits the measurement sweet spot for brands who truly value every interaction with their content and want hard data to see what inspires that action. For marketers who may be new to the Effectiveness Rate, it’s calculated as follows:
likes + comments + saves + video views / reach.
By utilizing reach, brands can understand how content performs without skewed numbers by a high follower count and lower reach. This is an important consideration, especially when one considers the shift from social media to social entertainment.
The Effectiveness Rate illuminates even your posts that aren’t seen by many people, by including reach, brands can understand if the content resonates with the people who did have the opportunity to see it.
If you only analyze from an engagement perspective, it might appear as if the content under-performed, when it didn’t. Leading brands use Effectiveness Rate alongside engagement rate in their reporting to gain a more informed and holistic view of content performance, and incorporate those learnings into strategy moving forward.
Engagement Rates measure how much your audience interacts, and are involved and devoted to your content. Dash Hudson measures engagement rate by calculating total engagements per post (think likes, comments, and shares), divided by reach, and multiplied by 100. Account engagement is measured by your total engagement, divided by your follower count, and multiplied by 100. The main difference is the inclusion of reach for individual post engagement, and followers for total account engagement.
Engagement Rate calculation for specific posts is: Interactions / Reach X 100
Engagement Rate calculation for accounts is: Interactions / Followers X 100
Video has seen amazing growth on social, with more video-specific formats being added to channels all the time.
It is, however, one of the trickier forms of content to measure properly and accurately. Audiences engage with video differently than photos, so expecting your video content to perform in the same way as photos can lead brands down a path that misses strategic opportunities. When looking at a photo, a user quickly intakes the information at a glance, and then chooses how to engage with it i.e. like, comment, or save. When a video comes across their screen, the primary action is now watching the video, and more is asked of the user. That is why video views are the primary action, and likes, comments, and saves are the secondary actions when the user goes above and beyond to interact. These video specific attributes are why so many brands lean on effectiveness as their main metric to understand video performance. Weighting video views equal to likes, comments, and saves is what makes effectiveness such a strong indicator of video success.
This is why Effectiveness Rate is a great indicator of video success — and when combined with Entertainment Score, brands get a robust picture that shows exactly how impactful their creative content is. The Entertainment Score measures your engagement rate and your retention rate, so marketers can see more than how their video performs in the moment, they can also see how it contributes to overall audience engagement, retention, and growth.
So, what’s the difference between Effectiveness Rate and Entertainment Score? Effectiveness Rate weighs the impact of multiple quantitative KPIs — likes, reach, views, and engagement. What's more, Effectiveness Rate is currently only available for Instagram and Facebook. Conversely, Entertainment Score is more indicative of your qualitative performance — how many people engage and watch the content?
It can be difficult to figure out how to measure content success, When diving into content performance, the team at Dash Hudson has always been proponents of content segmentation, and our community of marketers has backed that up with Boards being one of their favorite tools. Content segmentation is crucial when it comes to measurement, and even more so when looking at effectiveness. Because video views are part of the calculation, this typically leads to lower Effectiveness Rates for photos and higher rates for videos — which you’ll see in action in the benchmarks below. By always segmenting photo and video effectiveness, you are comparing apples to apples and can set more accurate goals.
When incorporating a new metric, it’s important to have context on both where your brand is currently sitting, and benchmarks for how your specific industry performs on social. Industries like Beauty, which was an early adopter of video, or media and publishing whose messaging lends itself well to video, will have higher video Effectiveness Rates (see below). While Fashion and Retail’s overall numbers are a bit lower for both photo and video, that should be taken into account when setting goals and judging the success of content. Ensure you view your effectiveness numbers in not only the context of your industry performance, but also the way the numbers are trending.
Ex: If you’re noticing a 0.75% drop in effectiveness over the last quarter but your industry as a whole saw a 1.5% drop, that will be essential information to provide during your quarterly reporting.
We looked at the average Effectiveness Rate for each month during Q4 of 2020 and Q1 of 2021 to identify industry trends for photo and video performance. These highlight nine key industries: Fashion, Retail, DTC, Media & Publishing, Beauty, Home, Food & Beverage, and CPG. An Effectiveness Rate of 3-5% for photos and 18-19% for videos, appears to be the general performance range that marketers should aim to hit, with some fluctuation depending on your specific industry.
The Effectiveness Rate is a powerful metric that keeps up with the demanding nature of content measurement in 2023. For brands who are, or planning to incorporate video into their strategy, the Effectiveness Rate will quickly become your best friend. Use content segmentation for your best-performing photos and videos and keep track of industry benchmarks to properly gauge your brand’s performance and set better, more well-informed goals.
To measure the success of social media posts, social marketers should first outline what post-specific KPIs they want to measure — a likely KPI is engagement rate, but these could include effectiveness rate, clicks, follower growth, or any other metric that helps you find success in your social strategy. For example, if your social campaign is focused on building brand awareness, you might prioritize engagement and follower growth over metrics like website clicks or purchases. Success is determined by whether or not you reach these goals. It’s also important to know that even if you don’t reach your goals, any insights are helpful for post-campaign reflection, especially when it comes time to set post goals for your new campaign.
The first step when considering how to report on successful social media campaigns is to define goals in your social media strategy — this can range from reach, to impressions, clicks, conversions, or whatever else makes sense in the context of your overall marketing strategy.
From there, social managers can use tools like Dash Hudson, platform analytics, Google Analytics, and more to track whether or not you reach your goals. It’s also important to measure these against overall performance to determine whether or not the KPIs you set for social content had a wider impact.
Social marketers can measure the engagement of Instagram posts under the ‘Insights Tab’ (or the analytics tab in whatever native app you use) or with Dash Hudson’s Social Media Insights, or Dashboards tool to pull in multi-channel social media analytics engagement rates for posts, Reels, campaigns, and more.