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

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Share on FacebookBuffer this page

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.