I tend to agree with Olivier Blanchard’s approach to social media ROI – that it is a financial measurement and shouldn’t include various non-financial measurements such as “likes”, comments, interaction or “brand awareness”. That doesn’t mean that these measures are not important metrics for your business or your marketing efforts – it’s that they are not measures that correlate with direct increase in revenue or reduction in costs.
When the team at social marketing platform, Wildfire, surveyed marketers to understand where they were looking for returns, many came back with three main metrics (only one of which is financial):
- Changes in fan base
- Brand awareness
Obviously, the focus of this survey was skewed towards marketing, but I firmly believe there is significant business value beyond a single line of business (especially for B2B). The challenge is figuring out not necessarily where the ROI is for your business – but where the value building opportunity lies. It’s about figuring out how you and your business can “become one” with The Social Way.