LAS VEGAS: Nestlé, the food and beverage company, is tracking the results of its social-media marketing efforts using a mix of “drive metrics” and “watch metrics”.

Pete Blackshaw, Global Head/Digital Innovation & Service Models at Nestlé, discussed what it regards as the “metrics that matter” at the Brand Innovation Salon convened by Medialink + CDX during CES 2018.

“We make a distinction between what we call ‘watch metrics’ and ‘drive’ metrics,” he said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: How Nestlé has discovered social “metrics that matter”.)

Building on this theme, “A ‘drive’ metric is one where you can make a very clean connection to purchase behaviour and brand lift,” Blackshaw explained.

“If you’re doing Facebook testing, and you’re using Datalogix, and you know if you’re buying x amount of social advertising, you can correlate it to offline purchases through these sophisticated panels.”

As digital retail gains further importance for brands in Nestlé’s categories, so will this type of measurement. “Now, with ecommerce growing, driving conversion has become a big deal,” he said.

Social media, the Nestlé digital marketer continued, increasingly ties back to ecommerce in a fashion that can meaningfully influence “drive” metrics. “What consumers say is heavily impacting purchase behavior,” he said.

“I even put ratings and reviews on the extreme side of social behaviour, because that is where the consumer is going, not only from an informal reference to a brand, but all the way down to something that really, really impacts purchase behaviour and becomes part of that decision-making process.”

Fuelling sales is obviously vital, but that does not negate the role of statistical indicators that have long been integral to the social-marketing playbook – say, “likes” on Facebook, retweets on Twitter, and comments on YouTube videos.

“The ‘watch’ metrics are the ones where you’re constantly optimizing. It may or may not link to brand lift; it really depends on how you act on it,” Blackshaw said.

“And I have lots of debates within my office about this, but I am still very, very bullish on the power and the potential of engagement metrics. I just think we need to be very good on how we convert that.”

Sourced from WARC