How You Can Measure Social Media

So how do you measure how beneficial social media is to your organization?  There are several things that you can look at to make a judgment about what you need to do next.

In this article, 10 Ways to Measure Social Media Success, several very good points are made about what a company needs to be looking at.

What to Measure

One point that is very important is that the traffic your webpage sees should be monitored.  But what is more important is to closely monitor the kind of traffic you are getting. Are people simply visiting the page? Or are they contributing by adding comments providing you with feedback.  Also, are they recommending other people to your site? Customers who frequent your site and participate in a conversation about you are very important in building a relationship through social media.  Social media marketing should aim to add value to your company and should encourage positive association with your brand.

Sales are another important thing to measure with social media.  The obvious thing a company strives for with any marketing strategy is return on investment.  ROI means that a company meets or exceeds the finances that were put into the marketing strategy.  Sales and ROI statistics are an easy thing to monitor for the company because it is what is very important to them.

Measurement Tools

There are several tools that are available to organizations to make measurement easier.  These include software programs such as Radian 6, Cymfony Orchestra and SM2.  In the article Top 3 Social Media Measurement Tools, these software programs are discussed in more detail.

Here is an interesting video to give you more information about Radian6.

April 18, 2010 at 5:34 pm 3 comments

Why You Need to be Measuring Social Media

So after completing my series of blogs about how different industries are being affected by social media I want to answer the question about why this is even important in the first place.  Companies need to monitor their social media programs for several key reasons.

Companies need to be able to evaluate if their social media strategies are working out as they had planned.  It needs to be analyzed like other marketing strategies, and must meet the marketing goals set out by the organization.  It is important that social media plans relate and build on the brand’s image.

After evaluation of the plan, if it is working out for the company they need to decide what they want to continue to do.  Organizations can continue on with the plan if they believe that is has been successful so far.  They can also adjust the current strategy to drive more positive outcomes for them.

On the opposite end, if the organization evaluates the plan and realizes that it does not meet their current goals, they need to decide what they need to do differently.  Without evaluation, the company might continue to waste money on an unsuccessful plan.  If they do not feel that it is working out they need to adjust their social media strategy or change it completely.

It is very important to evaluate all social media strategies so that organizations can make sure that they are representing the brand in the right way.  This means reaching the right target audience and encouraging positive associations of the organizations reputation and services.

April 16, 2010 at 5:24 pm 4 comments

Glee’s Rise to the Top

Last night, I found myself fascinated with the TV phenomenon Glee.  It was the first episode I had seen and I became instantly hooked.  The show was a mixture of comedy and drama in the setting of a high school.  Glee has built a huge fan base in the short time that it has been on the air.  A large part of this has to do with social media.

Fox has consistently built the Glee hype by using multiple social media outlets.  They have created a Twitter account, @gleeks, which has 50,000 followers.  The Facebook page dedicated to Glee fans has almost 2 million followers.  The show also has its own YouTube channel where fans can go watch the show’s performances.  All of these outlets can be accessed through Glee’s main page on the Fox website.

It is clear that Glee is continuing to pick up steam and will pick up even more fans as the season carries on.  The enthusiastic marketing strategy strays from most traditional TV promotions and urges fans to become more involved with the show.  They encourage fans to audition for the show through social media sites, which helps them to engage even more with viewers.

So what positive effects have the hit TV show seen because of social media?  Well it is obvious that they are working at creating a huge fan base and engaging them through many aspects of social media.  Besides that the ratings for Glee have skyrocketed.  The first episode of the show premièred at 9.62 million, but when the show returned this past week the numbers were outstanding with 13.66 million viewers.  Glee seems to know exactly the right formula for using social media to market their target audience and if they continue on this track it is obvious that they will continue to attract a larger audience.

April 14, 2010 at 5:11 pm 3 comments

Social Media Aiding in Disaster Relief

The recent disaster in Haiti generated a whole new use for social media.  Social media technologies helped to mobilize the world immediately after the earthquake happened.  Instantly efforts to raise money and gather supplies were broadcasted through sites like Twitter.

The Redcross increased their presence on Facebook, Twitter and their blogs with hopes to communicate to the broadest range of viewers to get help.

Cell phone users were able to text a number to instantly donate ten dollars to Haiti.  Twitter users were able to Tweet #HelpHaiti to show their support.  Daily Finance reported that five million dollars had been raised through the texting campaign.

Videos were uploaded to YouTube to show the world instantly the extent of the damage that Haiti suffered.  Social media was definitely one of the main tools used to show everyone up close what was going on in the midst of a disaster.

Along wit the success in fundraising, people who were on the scene in Haiti were able to update the rest of the world and posit pictures on their Twitters and Facebooks.  Most of the news coverage in Haiti was based on social media usage.

With a combination of social media outlets and traditional media, the Haiti relief efforts were able to raise millions worldwide.  This was a very successful campaign that can be attributed greatly to new social media.

March 27, 2010 at 7:17 pm 5 comments

Can Toyota Redeem Themselves Through Social Media?

As soon as the news of Toyota’s massive recall hit the news, it created a huge scandal for the successful company.  My family owns a Toyota, so there was a brief time period that we were worried about whether our car was safe, but luckily our car was fine.

Toyota is now making every effort possible to regain the public’s trust.  Their major tool of choice in crisis management is social media.  They have been turning to heavy reliance on Twitter, blogs and Facebook, where their fan base has grown by 10% by January (the time of the recall).

Because of the recall, Toyota has had to be aggressive in their social media response.  They created a social media response room, which staffs a group of people to monitor major communication mediums.  This has been especially helpful for the customers affected by the recall to engage in conversations with Toyota’s response team.

Toyota is using Digg to allow customers to interact and ask questions to Jim Lentz, president and CEO of Toyota motor sales.  This is a communication strategy that will provide the company transparency to the public.  This hopefully will help them regain trust and manage their crisis effectively.

Has Toyota done a good job in using social media effectively?  They responded in the right way, they did not ignore the issue.  They confronted it and used social media to talk to the public about what had happened and what they are doing to fix it.  If Toyota keeps being truthful and engaging with their publics they should be able to continue to use social media to rebuild a solid reputation.

March 17, 2010 at 3:28 pm 3 comments

Is Social Media Saving the News Industry?

After reading a classmate’s blog post on social media and news organizations I got to thinking, how do we know if this is helping them?  I often watch CNN, and throughout their programs they often encourage viewers to visit their social media sites.  On their Facebook and Twitter sites viewers can receive quick news updates and they can also post comments to provide the organization with feedback.  Often on television broadcasts the anchor asks people to go on the site and “weigh in” on a topic, and they then read several of the comments on a later broadcast of the same story.

This seems like a good way for news organizations to actively engage with viewers.  Before the communication channel was strictly a one way, audiences simply read or heard the news, but they were never provided with a way to comment on the story.

Twitter and Facebook are a rising trend for individuals and news groups to post updates about news, sometimes before the story breaks and goes mainstream.  Organizations like the New York Times and CNN and quickly building large online communities with a substantial amount of followers on their Facebook and Twitter pages.

Social media has become somewhat of a saving grace for the newspaper industry, who throughout that last few years has been dying out.  Online updates draw in a larger audience, and attract them to the publication, which will generate more income for them.

Social Media is definitely helping the industry be more attainable.  They are reaching out to a larger audience then ever and it is creating more of a following for topics such as world news and trending topics.

February 28, 2010 at 10:28 pm 2 comments

Social Media and the Music Industry: Friend or Enemy

I often find myself in the midst of a moral dilemma: should I or shouldn’t I download music illegally.  I know its wrong and here could be huge consequences, but sometimes I just cannot help myself.  So I have been thinking, is there a link between people who use social networking sites like Myspace to hear new music and illegal downloading?

A survey released by Entertainment Media Research says there is.  Myspace and sites like it offer uses the chance to preview music from artists on their page, introducing them to more music than before using TV and radio.  The music industry has the opportunity to potentially open up new doors through these sites and hook a larger audience for their artists.

But is it really helping them in the end, or is it hurting them?  A survey says that illegal downloading has drastically risen and social networks are partially to blame.  The majority of people who are downloading illegally are the younger generation, who are more likely to use social networking to hear new music.

Social networking is quickly becoming the main way that people listen to new music.  The survey done on the link to social media and illegal downloading also found that a large percent of people questioned using social media are downloading illegally.

With opportunities easily available to download illegally through programs such as Lime Wire, research has also shown that downloading legally through programs like ITunes has slowed down.

The increase in popularity of social networking gives the music industry an uncertain future.  They need to find a way to use sites to draw in customers, but also encourage them to invest money in their product.

February 28, 2010 at 9:31 pm 2 comments

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