How it works: YouTube Partner Programme

Over the last few years it seems that YouTube has evolved itself into the social networking channel that we knew it would become as a consequence of small and large businesses uploading advertising material and messages. In 2012, YouTube opened … Continue reading

Social Media, is it Worth it?

This week my wonderful world of social has been a tough one. Not tough as in hard but tough as in quite tongue twistingly, mind bendingly confusing! You see, I’m half way through collecting information and cementing the building blocks to my social media strategy and a lot of the time I’m staring into my computer thinking wow…

The world of social media is a tricky one in that, realistic return on investment is hard to show. We can all pretend that Social ROI is measurable and that we can get that final number, but in simple terms, there just isn’t one. So at the moment, my tongue twistingly, mind bendingly confusing question is, how do you prove social media is worth it?

I suppose it’s easy right? If a customer likes your Facebook page or follows you on Twitter and they enquire about a product or service and then go on to buy the product or service, that’s return… Wrong. The problem with social media is that it is the tray to your breakfast or the ambulance trolley. Social media is right there at the start of everything, helping and assisting the customer with queries. However, unless you have a Facebook tab “shop”, it is left standing when all pre purchase evaluation has been covered (pretty much like an ambulance trolley which only sees it to the door of the hospital).

As technology has moved on we can use google analytics to track where the customer has been on their journey and if they have gone on to make a purchase. However, when looking at your companies analytics, when is social media ever at the end? It’s not, it’s in the middle, being used as a pre purchase evaluation tool where people are looking for their “pros and cons” or their recommendations.

That’s the problem really… Social media will never be the final party or the only party in a purchase and so it is difficult to determine how much input it has had to the sale. The conference I went to a couple of weeks ago covered ROI and how it could be measured and one woman suggested that ROI should stand for “Return on Influence” in the social media world. Now that makes sense! Through analytics and Facebook tabs I can tell you if I’ve influenced a customer into taking the next step on the customer journey. I can tell you if I’ve generated a lead because of a post or a tweet. So why not! Why can’t we turn round to our FD’s and say “I can’t tell you how much money I’m making but I can tell you how much I’m influencing?” (Are you laughing too?)

That’s why my week has been tough, people want figures, money, pound signs, and in the social media world it’s a struggle to find them. So I have concluded this… If people want them, they’ll get them. My reports each week include several figures such as reach, leads and how much interaction we have had and therefore non directly, without saying it, I’m showing that return on influence with that aspect of real ROI (leads).

If like me you’re having the same problems, trying to figure out how to show that one figure, do what I did and slow down, take a minute and look at the influence because if the influence is strong and the purchase intention is strong, your social media will give that one final push to the website or the store and really, that’s all we need…