Quantifying the Marketing Value of Social Analytics

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The Main Values – Social Media provides numerous values to the marketer whether reaching businesses or consumers by:

  • Enabling a company to build sustainable channels for future dialogue
  • Allowing the distribution and sharing of meaningful content to a social network
  • Facilitating positive or negative comments about a company, brand or product
  • Providing a vehicle for response to these comments with the company having control as to the privacy level of the response

Social Media Marketing Objectives – The objectives associated with this area of marketing range from the standard top line revenue drivers typically measured in Leads Generated and New Customers to those objectives more specific to the social channels, such as Followers, Customer Engagement and Access to Influencers. However, there are also the fundamentals that are often more important than initially understood by many marketing teams. As an example, capturing followers on each site is usually tracked, but not always leveraged to its full benefit.  If a company defines its intention with regard to the followers they will capture, it provides clarity toward campaign goals. When obtaining a Twitter follower, a company now has permission to send the equivalent of an email via Twitter’s Direct Message functionality.

When exploring beyond the marketing department, there may be many objectives driven by the Customer Service team. For instance, these may include Total Inquiries and Outbound Responses. Explore further into the realm of Market Research and you may find a wealth of data that provides insights into market needs or customer opinions, either of which could complement traditional market research methods. When objectives are well understood, it is possible to identify how to positively affect results in many areas of a company.

Quantifying the Value of Social Analytics – The objectives described above must be applied to the specific goals of a business and then measured to understand the overall success of marketing efforts within social media. This can be translated into the following examples of how to determine the value of analytics based on the capabilities you want to support within your organization:

  • Content Publishing: efficiencies created with regard to distributing content
  • Lead Generation: calculating the expected incremental prospects by channel
  • Market Research: estimating the additional access to customer feedback
  • Customer Service: Promptness in replying to customer inquiries at time of occurrence

A Marketer’s Perspective – While these are only examples, it begins to shed light on how building a social media marketing program may be a strategic element to your company’s marketing efforts. This baseline then suggests the necessity of tracking the key performance indicators with social analytics. The power of the channel increases with volume and its corresponding quality.

What Could Stop Us Now – As with any new endeavor it is imperative to understand the roadblocks to successful tracking of social analytics. Asking questions such as: Will the captured data be 100% accurate?  What percent of the total information is represented by the data sets gathered? How accurate are the sentiment algorithms? This is a brief sampling of considerations important to social listening.

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