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Business Consulting For The 21st Century Via A Holistic & Intelligent Approach

Traditional marketing, social media and ROI

Answered => “How would you measure the ROI in social media?” on Quora.

=> My answer…

I’d like to say the answer should be: In most of the ways that are very similar to your traditional marketing. However, a fair amount of traditional marketing isn’t well measured either, is it? And even when it is, there’s a bias in the analysis that quite often comes down to “But it was cool. It was good. We liked it. There’s no way it could have failed. Let’s pretend it was a success. Quick find a subjective ‘metric’…”

Granted, I’m exaggerating a bit but my sense is that in a fair number of cases “What’s the ROI from social media?” is Ludditespeak for “I don’t get it. I’m not going to tell you I don’t get it. Instead I’m going to defend and veil my fears and put you on the defensive. Let me play the ROI card.”

Some would argue that Social Media is even more measurable than traditional marketing. Obviously, that’s going to make some traditional marketers pretty nervous. Gawd forbid we should hold “the creatives” accountable. I’m not picking on creatives. Some of my best friends are creative. On the other hand, I understand and appreciate that the desire for analysis and measuring comes from the other side of the brain. Given this fact, my zest is directed at those who expect creative cats to bark.

I’m certainly not suggesting that SM shouldn’t be measured or can’t be measured. In fact, for anyone who is serious about marketing and analytics I highly recommend (the under-rated ) “What Sticks” by Rex Briggs & Greg Stuart. (Pardon the self-promotion but you can find a chapter by chapter summary here: The COP (as they call it) is heavy handed but in general it is/was a book ahead of its time. The bit about the TV advert being debuted for the client at the agency sums it all up and is priceless.

So to answer your question…

Start with “What Sticks” and work from there. Regardless of what type of marketing it is the context of standards/measurement should be consistent.

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