Social media's ROI: Social must shift product

Bryan Urbick
Consumer Knowledge Centre

Relying on easily measurable data to judge social media campaigns is risky and a short-term solution. Brands need to consider what really matters to the business, such as selling product, to determine the success of their strategy – as Pepsi learned to its cost.

There have been many research studies undertaken that aptly demonstrate that most businesses today use the internet and social media networks to market their organisations and products. No surprises there. Yet despite all the hype about digital marketing, brands continue to struggle to get their social media campaigns right – to keep them current and maintain real vibrancy.

As with all key performance indicators (KPIs) used by management to evaluate the efficiency of investments in product development, marketing performance and other corporate activities, accurately evaluating the return on investment of social media becomes very challenging. The principal reason is that multiple data points are thrown up – retweets, likes, follows, comments, shares and website visits – the combination of which creates a complex mix of metrics.