Social Marketing Fella

Social Media ROI?

Social Media ROI for Business
Social Media for Business ROI

Lots of debate has circled around the return on investment (ROI) for businesses considering engaging in social media marketing to drive brand recognition and revenue.  An article from Inc. in 2011 started of with this line: Read it and tweet: Social media takes a lot of time, but it pays off…”  While not the definitive answer to the on-going debate, it was a meaningful, largely broadcasted statement.

So how do you achieve a good social media for business ROI? And what are some good social media marketing tips?  Social media is a highly effective medium to maintain conversations with your potential customers, and more so, than as an incessant instrument to promote your product.  Just as you wouldn’t wedge yourself into a conversation between a few people and start toting about your product and how they should buy it, effective businesses approach social media with the same consideration.  It’s all about the conversations, and being interesting.

So what social media tools to you use to attract prospective customers?   FacebookTwitter, YouTube, Google+, and blogs are the top social media tools.  The formula I like to think of around them is, “broadcast-follow” and “promote-like.”  Twitter is the ultimate tool for broadcasting your business voice.  From there, interested customers can follow you.  YouTube behaves the same way.  Google+ and Facebook, on the other hand, are more fitted for business promotion, via effective, compelling activities like articles, promotions, and games, and the proliferation of your brand awareness through “liking” or “adding.”   Effectively, then, Facebook is an ideal use of social media for business when it comes to having a dialogue with your customers, and Twitter works well at “striking curiosity” and initiating that dialogue.

The effectiveness, best practices of these and other tools is well covered throughout my blog in other posts.  And now I’m focusing more on following the best developments in measuring social media ROI.  Because quantifying the ROI of a company’s social media campaign has been every marketer’s challenge and the main point of naysayers.   But social media for business methods and tools are evolving and include measurement of  key performance indicators and metrics.

Key performance indicators (KPIs)

    • Reach
    • Sign Ups
    • Leads
    • Sales

Key Metrics: the numbers that funnel into your KPIs

    • Click-throughs
    • Fans and followers
    • Retweets
    • Visits
    • Comments

In the end, delivering strong ROI on your social media for business strategy requires that you be interesting and write compelling, remarkable content, and that you maintain a continual voice in all the social media channels you use.  Done correctly, and regularly, social media marketing can be effective both as a driver of traffic and sales and as an influencer and promoter for your business.

A few awesome references I like to refer back to on the subject, include:

One comment on “Social Media ROI?”

  1. Hal

    The thing I find tough is that the benefits of social media go beyond anything that can be captured in one simple ‘ROI’ number. It’s more than just measuring conversions or sales: the awareness, goodwill and strengthening of the brand message can be huge. But how do you convince a numbers-driven, skeptical CEO of that?

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Andre Bourque (SocialMarketingFella) is Editor Emeritus of Technorati.

He covers emerging trends and news in social, mobile, cloud, and related technologies.

Based in San Francisco, he can be contacted via his social channels and at:


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