Posted February 25, 2010 8:28 am by with 10 comments

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The Value of Social Media Report has been released by Econsultancy and the Online Marketing Summit. I was offered a sneak peek at the study and provided my analysis for the report. It’s definitely worth the investment, and as a taster, here’s my analysis:

What struck me the most is that 61% of companies feel their measurement of the return on investment (ROI) from social media is either poor, or very poor. It could well be that these companies are looking for ROI in the wrong places.

Sixty nine percent of those surveyed said that Twitter is their most used social media channel–beating out other social media options such as a company blog, social networking, and video. It’s a staggering number, when you consider that Twitter is still in its infancy and arguably lacks any robust tools that businesses can use to their advantage. This high percentage of use suggests that companies are looking for the "easy" option, when it comes to social media. After all, it takes less than a minute to set up a Twitter account, whereas a corporate blog could take days–or weeks!

The other clue that Twitter has become the "bandwagon" of corporate social media, is the type of ROI that companies are trying to measure. The greatest percentage (63%) are measuring the direct traffic to their corporate site from Twitter. While some companies–such as Dell–have had great success with generating traffic and sales from their efforts on Twitter, an even bigger benefit can be realized from the increase in brand awareness and reputation. Yet, only 15% of companies are measuring the impact of Twitter and Facebook on their brand perception, 18% measure customer satisfaction, and 25% understand the benefits to their brand awareness.

You could argue that more companies would find satisfaction in their ability to measure the ROI of social media, if they turned their expectations from direct traffic and instead focused on the improvements they are making towards the sentiment of their brand.

  • Chris

    Am I the only one that can’t read the words under the graphs?

    • Andy Beal

      I can see them OK. What resolution is your screen?

    • gene sower

      They’re all smudgy for me, too. 1280 x 7-something resolution. Is there an original source I could look at? Good article. Thanks -gene

  • Lafate Smith

    Brand improvement and awareness is without a doubt one of the great benefits from posting tweets and interacting on Twitter. However, the challenge is still trying to quantify via some type of metrics just how well one is strengthening or improving upon their brand via the time spent and methods used on Twitter (i.e. ROI). Consequently, until a better measurement is found, we are relegated to depend on website traffic data, the number of followers we have, link click through rates, etc. to reach some type of statistical measurable conclusion.

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  • Tim Little

    Great blog:

    Many larger retail marketers have been using social networking for a while for example Subway and Dunkin Donuts use mobile text coupons to customers via opt-in and I understand It’s working well the next step is to send alerts to customers Twitter followers.

    Tim Little

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