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The ROI Of Social Media

Written by Ken Gaebler
Published: 7/28/2012

New research shows that marketing professionals are struggling to attach measurable ROI to social media spend, even though they are convinced social media is an important marketing resource.

Social media has given small and medium-sized businesses a new and powerful way to connect with customers. There are many reasons why social media is different from traditional advertising, including the fact that the right social media strategy can encourage customers to become advocates for the brand.

The ROI of Social Media

But although marketers recognize the value of a social media presence, many are experiencing difficulty in connecting the money they invest in social media with measurable outcomes.

In a recent survey by The Creative Group, 40 percent of marketing executives reported the inability to accurately measure ROI as their greatest social media challenge. Another 19 percent indicated that identifying knowledgeable employees capable of managing and executing social media strategies is a significant problem that impacts the success of their social media initiatives.

The complete tally of responses to inquiries about the most challenging aspect of social media marketing efforts included:

  • Inability to measure ROI (40%)
  • Lack of knowledgeable staff (19%)
  • Insufficient social media budget (13%)
  • Lack of executive support (10%)
  • No challenges (19%)
  • Other (6%)

Donna Farrugia, executive director of The Creative Group said, "The social media landscape is changing constantly, making it difficult for companies to not only determine which channels to focus on but also how to effectively measure the impact of their efforts."

When it comes to employing social media savvy workers, Farrugia adds, "Companies want people who are passionate about using social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest, and who recognize and can take advantage of business applications for these channels."

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