Social Media ROI

Let’s talk a bit about social media’s return on investment.

If you haven’t heard, IT’S INCREDIBLE.

But first, let’s look at one example of ROI for a more traditional form of advertising.

According to FitSmallBusiness, billboard advertising in the US in 2017 cost between $1,500 and $4,000, with prices as high as $14,000.

They claim that the number of people seeing that high-priced $14,000 ad in NYC on a weekly basis is 8,000,000, which is an incredible 0.00175 cents per view.  Great value, right?

If it were true.

Because really – how can you possibly know?

In a world where more and more passengers are on their phone, does it make sense to spend money on billboards?  Maybe some.  But shouldn’t the bulk of your budget go where your clients’ attention is?

With social media, you can calculate with precision your cost per impression.  And, best of all, social media ads can be highly targeted.  Is your ideal client a 35 year old woman who lives in the suburb with two kids who goes to yoga and hates bananas?  Done.

Content Source: Social ROI, Shane Gibson,  Image Source: Mark Smiciklas,

The cost of your ad impressions will depend on a number of factors, including relevance to your audience, ad competition, time of year, and where you want your ads placed.  Just like billboards, the cost for impressions can be fractions of a cent.  But when you advertise online, your audience has an opportunity to engage with your business directly.  Using features like a Facebook pixel, you can track traffic to your page and retarget them with future ads.

Can a billboard do all that?

The question really is: what is the ROI of not being on social media?  Of a potential customer looking you up online and finding nothing – or worse, a post of a cat from 2010 that makes them question your professionalism and/or whether or not you are still in business?

Cute?  Yes.  Relevant to your business?  Probably not.

Shelly Steffler is a Social Media Strategist.  She can be reached at or through





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