Branding, metrics, roi

Measuring social media’s ROI performance and mtg with David Beaton, Custometrics

It is early days in decent social media measurement in both ROI and performance measurement.  The social networks themselves offer little to measure – which is why a meeting with David Beaton, Custometrics to discuss conclusively measuring the impact of social media on brands and business just tickled me pink.   First off – a big thank you to David Ing, a former colleague of mine from IBM who acted as the connector.

At the lovely red rocket café (excellent scones and coffee, free wifi no limits), I spoke of my frustration of not being able to show tangible roi from social media activities.    My last client wanted to see a direct line from social media to the bottom line – which is so hard to do when there are so many other factors influencing the bottom line.   Sure our campaign was successful and the client was very pleased with the efforts – but it was still hard to deal with the desire for a straight line to revenue generation.

This is the kind of tough research and analytics that David’s teams do all the time.  David leads Custometrics, a company that is regularly commissioned to help identify which marketing activities lead to the greatest impacts on brands – thereby adding a significant amount of science to how a marketer should allocate her spending.

David was excellent at explaining what is hard to explain.   Many marketers experimenting with social media have a hard time answering to how effective social media has been compared to other spending.  In the absence of good ROI measurement the effectiveness of social media is not known.  But being unknown is not same as bad or ineffective – it is just that the effects are not known.   Unfortunately – unknown effectiveness might as well be bad as some marketers could default back to traditional and ‘safe’ vehicle choices too early in their exploration.

The other half of the equation here – is getting something worthy of measuring.  If firms are testing social media but not truly understand how create strategies that will make social media work hard – the results will not be stellar.   That’s where I hope to come in. I would LOVE to be the surrogate marketer by playing an acting marketer role creating the digital marketing strategy and execution to fit the marketing and business goals.    I see lots of metric holes and analyzes that if I had access to someone like David – I could really feed.  Drawing a straight line to brand impact and sales volume for instance.  Show lift of baseline.  Separating all other factors from social media to prove success would be a lovely engagement.  I want it and the bigger the better.

I look forward to uncovering the science – I welcome others thoughts here too.


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Related posts from Laurie:

Social media metrics — an earlier post about managing corporate facebook pages.

Branding, Facebook, social networks

Top Five Facebook Fan Pages in terms of active fan base

From Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook’s presentation .  Top 5 facebook fan pages in terms of fan base.

She talks about the importance of allowing people to interact with brands the way they interact with friends and family.

1. Micheal Jackson = 10.2 million fans
2. Barack Obama = 6.7 million fans
3. Vin Diesel (?!) = 6.3 million fans
4. Facebook = 5.1 million fans
5. Megan Fox (already?) = 4.9 million fans
10. Starbucks = 3.8 million fans

Branding, customer experience, Facebook, social networks, twitter, web 2.0, youtube

Powerful video: Social Media REVOLUTION explained

Sharing a great video from @1zenmom.    I like this video because it articulates what is hard to explain to some – that is that we are presently sitting in a revolution – a shake-up as grand as the industrial revolution, information age, etc.    Sometimes it is hard to explain how social networks / web 2.0 are shaking up every business model – especially to those who have yet to personally adopt these emerged platforms.

Branding, customer experience, youtube

Air New Zealand YouTube video hitting 3M after two weeks

Okay – so its no Susan Boyle video (in reality content nor growth) – but Air New Zealand has taken the air flight safety video up a big notch with its body painted staff giving a revised safety video.

I’m certain any customer experience mapping (a.ka. figuring out the customer interactions including the boring painful interactions of in flight experiences) would uncover some issues around air flight safety explanations – so it is interesting to see Air New Zealand take this experience up a notch.

Interestingly,  Air NZ are doing a great job of reusing content assets by uploading to youtube and allowing some viral eyeballs from youtube.     How many times have I tried to get my own companies to think about the reuse of assets online.  I’m not suggesting posting print grocery flyers online in pdf format  (egad – does that actually work?) but using youtube for video is a fantastic reuse.

I’m happy for the body painter that Air NZ is exposing (excuse the pun) the video outside of those who fly Air NZ.

Branding, fans / loyalty, twitter

The greening of profiles – Mousavi’s silent & powerful support

I noticed on my twitter feed that some profiles were turning green.  They were with folks across the globe and not necessarily connected.  Something is up.   I blasted my question out on twitter.     There is a twitter campaign to change avatars to green in support to Mousavi’s 2009 presidential campaign for the Iranian election.   Ah..

I love how people figure out new ways to support their values & beliefs silently but powerfully.  The green profile is very noticable on my tweetdeck as I start to see a collage of green among the tweets.  This is a first that I’ve seen in social networking.  Check out twitter’s #iranelection for more.

tweetdeck turns green as Mousavi's support colours twitter
tweetdeck turns green as Mousavi's support colours twitter

I’m still learning about the Iran Election, Mousavi and the power social networking is having.  I did listen to CBC today with interest on how the Iranian government is trying to cut off access to social networking sites.  Facebook and Twitter are blocked as are opposition websites – as are dial up phone communications.  Interestingly though – CBC says in an article titled “Iran blames US for bitter post election dispute”:

Iranian websites, as well as blogs, Facebook and Twitter, have been vital conduits for Iranians to inform the world about protests over the apparent landslide victory for Ahmadinejad.

All three of Ahmadinejad’s challengers in Friday’s election have alleged fraud after results showed the president winning by a 2-to-1 margin.

Added note:  See @scribblegirl  who writes #helpiranelection – show support for democracy in Iran add green overlay to your Twitter avatar with 1-click –

Branding, meme, youtube

Domino’s unlikely lesson for employees

I’ve been thinking about the Domino’s pizza issue.  Surely to god thirty somethings understand the power of youtube and mass audiences.   And yet, like winning a lottery, I’m sure both Micheal and Kristy, the two Domino’s employees who released the gross pizza videos on youtube, never imagined their little video would get such a large audience (and $7,500 bail out, and lawsuit pending and maybe difficult employment for a good 10 years).   

A lot of folks have written about the marketing lessons for Domino’s  – the same old ‘you must listen and act on the conversations’ (which I subscribe to) and yet, there is a major policy & procedural lesson here for companies and employee alike.   I wonder what kind of company wide acknowledgement Domino’s had that social medias will be used by employees and that there should be guidelines around the use of social media.  Of course, I’m sure blogging guidelines wouldn’t have stopped a stupid pizza prank but I am left wondering how many companies acknoweldge what is common activity for their employees.

On the employee side – knowledge about their impact on the customer experience and brand reputation in the 2010s should be a part of employee onboarding.

Sometimes I think news must be pretty slow for news agencies to pick up on such a lame story and yet, the impact of this video is stunning – tons of customers have reportedly called into Domino’s since and sales.. it would be interesting to understand sales impact in that town, region, etc.   The videos bring question into quality control, employee training, morale, food safety.