Three Wise Dames

Marketing in the Life Science Industry

Guest Post Part III: Judging Social Media Success February 21, 2013

Filed under: Debbie,Guest Posts,Social media — Debbie Donovan @ 12:00 pm
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Guest Wise Dame Susan L. Brown for Brown & Associates

elephantWboyWguitarROI for social media and communities is the “elephant in the room.” Everyone wants a definitive answer to how to evaluate return on investment. Also how much investment is enough? What are the resources needed? What kind of social media is effective and why?

“The most socially engaged companies typically enjoyed revenue growth of 18% on average over the last 12 months, while the least socially engaged brands saw revenues fall 6%.”

  • The study also showed that social media reach alone may have a positive impact: BUTTERFLIES enjoyed significantly stronger revenue returns than SELECTIVES or WALLFLOWERS. Why? Because more touch points can present a ripple effect, inducing viral marketing, boosting brand recognition and driving sales volume.
  • SELECTIVES delivered higher gross and net margins, suggesting that deep engagement in a few channels can be a rewarding and effective social media strategy. Focusing on depth over breadth present an opportunity to better understand the customer, react quickly to customer demand, and improve satisfaction – which in turn generates pricing power and drives business success.

Key Take-aways:

  • Engagement via social media IS important — and we CAN quantify it.
  • It pays in both revenue and profits to engage meaningfully in social media. Emphasize quality, not just quantity.
  • To scale engagement, make social media part of everyone’s job.
  • Doing it all may not be for you — but you must do something.
  • Find your sweet spot – it is better to be consistent and participate in fewer channels than to spread yourself too thin.

How Companies Judge Social Media Success

The amount of web site traffic generated is the most popular way that companies in this study measure the success of their social media initiatives, followed by engagement with prospects and brand awareness.

Figure 1: Top Social Media Success Metrics

SuccessMetrics

 The next figure shows the bottom two box (Not at All, Barely) and top two box (Well, Very Well) percentages for respondents using each of the success metrics

Respondents were asked how well they can see the impact of company social media initiatives on the success metrics they use today using the following scale:

1. Not at All – Unable to Measure

2. Barely – May or May Not Have the Data

3. Somewhat – Data is There but You Have to Dig

4. Well – Most of the Data is Easily Accessed

5. Very Well – Part of Standard Reports

Figure 2: Ability to See Impact of Social Media Initiatives on Success Metrics

SocialMediaSuccessMetrics

Don’t Miss:

Part I: 6 Key Steps to Determine Social Media ROI

Part II: Social Media’s Impact on Purchases

(C) 03/2011, updated, 1/2013; all rights reserved. This article may be shared in part or whole with credit given to author and link to Brown & Associates

 

Guest Post Part I: 6 Key Steps to Determine Social Media ROI February 7, 2013

Filed under: Debbie,Guest Posts,Social media — Debbie Donovan @ 12:00 pm
Tags: ,

Guest Wise Dame Susan L. Brown for Brown & Associates

elelphantWgirlWbananasROI for social media and communities is the “elephant in the room.” Everyone wants a definitive answer to how to evaluate return on investment. Also how much investment is enough? What are the resources needed? What kind of social media is effective and why?

Addressing these questions is the first step to defining Social Media ROI.

Context is everything

The first issue to realize is that while social media and networking communities are new vehicles, however, they must be evaluated in context of each company’s business model, objectives, market and customers. Without this context there is no objective way to determine the value of social media and communities in a business situation.

What are these vehicles and why are they different? Mainly because the value of social media is interactive and immediate feedback as well as “user generated content,” a marketing-speak way of saying the content includes a dialogue with participants, instead of the advertising model where copywriters create text and readers are passive recipients.

Success in online marketing hinges on effective budget allocation and marketing mix decision making. Practitioners and executives must be able to identify the marketing campaigns and assets that help drive the business’ top and bottom lines, and invest in and optimize them accordingly. This of course requires access to comprehensive, granular, and accurate web analytics data with which marketers can measure campaign performance and understand the complex website and social media behaviors of prospects and customers. Performance measurements should not occur solely within the confines of individual channels and campaigns. The best online marketers measure performance and ROI in a comprehensive view that comprises all online channels, be they social media, paid and natural search, email marketing, banner or display ads as well as lead generation webinars, opt-in advertising campaigns, website content, coupons, contests, blogs, videos, etc.

Social Media Benefits and Risks


Benefits


Risks

  • Distribution is cost effective with potential wide global reach
  • Reduced customer acquisition costs
  • Increased website traffic potential
  • Direct sales opportunities
  • Immediate feedback gives ability to respond to issues or complaints in a timely manner
  • Capability of viral marketing—to build a brand through building “fans”
  • Communities can create unique customer engagement and retention and selling opportunities
  • Lack of message  “control”—companies fear potential legal risk and liability for unauthorized statements
  • Social media requires ongoing updates and responses to participants’ issues; resources need to be assigned and costs more than originally estimated
  • Monitored vs. Open Forums; decisions regarding the type of communities need to be addressed; and what guidelines to be developed

6 Key Steps to Determine Social Media ROI

  1. What are your purposes and objectives?
    • To introduce new products and services?
    • To provide customer support and/or reduce call center expenses?
    • To generate leads?
    • To create customer, partner, patient communities as a vehicle for engagement and retention?
    • To create internal communities or collaboration portals for employee retention, engagement and to add to innovation?
    • To use communities to increase revenue through coupons, contests, direct sales?
    • Can you use social media to sell directly?
  1. What elements of social media would be most important and yield greatest benefits and ROI for your business?
    • Blogs
    • Customer, Partner, Patient, Internal Communities
    • Facebook page(s)
    • Twitter campaigns
    • Online ads
    • YouTube Channel
  1. Budgeting and Resources?
    • Determine % of Budget for Social Media (Consider 2-5 % of marketing budget to start)
    • Content creation; at least one dedicated FTE per blog, or vehicle; or outsource?
    • Participant response: at least one dedicated FTE per blog or vehicle; or outsource?
  1. Creating On-Going Content; What Content aggregation, lead management or listening tools to use?
    • Ping.fm
    • Seesmic.com
    • Hootsuite
    • Social Mention
    • Marketo
    • Meltwater
    • Radian6
    • TweetDeck
    • Eloqua
    • Silverpop
    • Others?
  1. What to measure?
    • Website click through, Page views, downloads, etc.
    • Community/Fan page followers; membership, referrals, etc.
    • Social media activity; Community, Facebook, Twitter retweets/ activity/responses, engagement
    • Online ad follow through (leads, conversion to sales, etc.)
    • Lead results (qualified leads, scoring, contacts, registrations, etc.)
    • Customer or user conversion
  2. What analytic/measurement tools to use?

Next–Part II: Social Media’s Impact on Purchases

Don’t Miss–Part III: Judging Social Media Success

(C) 03/2011, updated, 1/2013; all rights reserved. This article may be shared in part or whole with credit given to author and link to Brown & Associates

 

 
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