Executive Briefings

Where's the ROI in Social Media, and Can Traditional Metrics Tell You?

The power of social media - or, at least, its potential power - is not lost on American companies. Many are using it successfully for everything from new-product marketing to employee collaboration to innovative and very effective forms of customer service. But most companies are struggling mightily to turn nascent, ad hoc efforts into something resembling an actual strategy. To date, however, much of this activity has been akin to an aspiring actor having a professional head shot taken: it's standard practice, but it doesn't guarantee you'll land any roles. As they rush to put their best faces forward, companies increasingly want to know just what they can expect to gain for their trouble.

According to a recent IBM report on social media, the top social media challenge for companies is "establishing an ROI strategy." However, many experts caution CFOs against insisting upon traditional metrics to determine ROI for such a young technology.

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The power of social media - or, at least, its potential power - is not lost on American companies. Many are using it successfully for everything from new-product marketing to employee collaboration to innovative and very effective forms of customer service. But most companies are struggling mightily to turn nascent, ad hoc efforts into something resembling an actual strategy. To date, however, much of this activity has been akin to an aspiring actor having a professional head shot taken: it's standard practice, but it doesn't guarantee you'll land any roles. As they rush to put their best faces forward, companies increasingly want to know just what they can expect to gain for their trouble.

According to a recent IBM report on social media, the top social media challenge for companies is "establishing an ROI strategy." However, many experts caution CFOs against insisting upon traditional metrics to determine ROI for such a young technology.

Read Full Article