We've had a number of occasions where organizations have come to Cerado wanting to sprinkle magic Social faerie dust on their existing business efforts. "We need to be doing things on Twitter! An Facebook! And FriendFeed! And Flickr! And YouTube! And…"
And…hold on a second. (And, most importantly, please do not start the conversation by putting up a slide that looks like someone puked up every logo that's appeared on TechCrunch or Mashable over the past two years, and claim that as a "Social Media Strategy." Seriously. I've seen this done. It's not pretty. But I digress.)
The first thing we ask "why do you want to do this?" There are a number of prerequisites to work through before going down the social business path; here's a starting point to walk through the fundamentals that we put together back in 2007; it still seems to be holding up as a reasonable set of guidelines.
The thing that seems to tether the conversation to reality is the conversation around metrics. Metrics are how we tie the "why" to the business. We put together a quick slide deck with a few thoughts on how to set up metrics around a social business effort; it's embedded below.
A lot of the structure from this thinking ties back to Joe Cothrel's seminal article from 2000, "Measuring the Success of an Online Community." (Cothrel, J. P., 2000, Measuring the Success of an Online Community. Strategies & Leadership, v. 20, no. 2, pp 17-21. MCB University Press.) Make sure to check it out.
Additionally, Hannah Del Porto at ImpactWatch has collected a killer list of additional resources on the metrics front. Go check out Hannah's post for some great commentary on the topic as well. The links:
- 15 Ways to Measure Return on Engagement (ROE) of Social Media – PR Sarah Evans
- How to NOT calculate Social Media R.O.I. – The Brand Builder
- ROI vs. “Impact on X” – Understanding what Social Media ROI is and isn’t – The Brand Builder
- Social Media Monitoring: Brands That Listen Make Better Friends – Matt Granfield
- Social media success doesn’t start with ROI – Social Media.biz
- Measuring Linkfluence and Visual Social Media Monitoring – IStrategy Labs
- Social Media Cost Per Click Analysis – Social Media Surfer
- Social media and the acid-bath of ROI – Business Insight Zone
- How High Should You Set The Bar For Customer Service With Social Media Engagement? - PR Communications
So, how are your measuring social business activities in your organizations? Any other best practices out there that people are finding useful that might be worth sharing?