(Updated August 2017) I originally wrote this article in April of 2009 and when I reviewed it today I decided everything in it was outdated and otherwise useless information. It was also full of broken links so I thought today was the day I would resurrect this post and do a complete rewrite.
The Problem With Social Media
According to The CMO Survey, 44.1% of executives say they haven’t been able to show the impact of their social media spending. Moreover, only 4.6% said they felt that social media contributed significantly to company performance. That leaves us in an awkward spot right? Nobody want’s to feel like they are being left out of the “conversation”. However, we are also not sure if this conversation is worth being in at all because for many products it’s hard to directly tie your social media efforts directly to a sale.
Social Media is Still New
In relative terms compared to the web, email, direct mail, etc, social media is still very new. The reality is we are still learning how to track and measure it. Worse yet, much of what we do with social media marketing is a branding effort at best. How can we say for sure that engineers are specifying our product in their designs because they saw our tweet or read our blog post? If they are then sales are clearly being made because of it but how do you prove it?