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“At the end of the day, if you can measure

“At the end of the day, if you can measure
customers generated from social media, you’ve
won.”....this is all about it!

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Marketing profs 2012-state-of-social-media-marketing-v5os6sha Marketing profs 2012-state-of-social-media-marketing-v5os6sha Document Transcript

  • Sponsored by2012 State of Social Media Marketing: Social Media Measurement, Objectives, and Budget Implications
  • Section 1: Introduction Where are we in the evolution of social media Change in Actively Managed Social Networks marketing? 2009 to 2012 (MarketingProfs) Two years ago, when MarketingProfs published its last 2009 2012 report on the State of Social Media, the social media marketing landscape looked vastly different. Conversations 86% 84% about marketing with social media centered on whether or 72% not to jump on the bandwagon given the astronomical 69% growth rates of sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. 48% Some marketers were struggling to convince management 43% of the value and necessity of social media as a marketing 39% platform, while others were waiting to see what, if anything, 26% all of the hype would amount to. At that time, just slightly more than half of the companies surveyed reported that 8% their company maintained a corporate profile on at least 2% one social media site. Facebook led the way with 48%, Facebook Twitter LinkedIn YouTube MySpace followed by 43% on Twitter and 39% with a presence on Source: MarketingProfs LinkedIn. The goal of this first report on the 2012 State of Social86% of companies maintain a Facebook presence, Media research study is to provide marketers with insights84% are active on Twitter, and 72% show up on that will help navigate this new reality. Specifically, we willLinkedIn. address the following questions: Since then, the conversation has shifted from participa- 1. Defining Objectives: Which objectives are social tion to value. The vast majority of companies now report media marketers using to guide their efforts in maintaining a presence in social media. The same three social media? sites lead the way, but the use of these sites has nearly 2. Delivering to the C-Suite: Which objectives does doubled in just over 2 years—86% of companies maintain management expect to achieve through social a Facebook presence, 84% are active on Twitter, and 72% media? What metrics do they consider important show up on LinkedIn. when considering additional investment in social With social media now a staple in the marketing mix, media? marketers have shifted their focus from establishing a 3. The Measurement Gap: How well are marketers presence toward addressing how to create meaningful able to measure the things management consid- engagement with consumers, how to measure it, and how ers important? How wide is the gap between what to connect these activities to their impact on the bottom marketers can measure and what management is line. The majority of social media marketers surveyed looking for? (71%) say they are now concerned with demonstrating value to upper management. As social media marketing 4. Measurement Tools: Which tools are being used begins to come of age and marketers begin asking for to measure the effectiveness of social media? larger budgets for their programs, they must quantify the 5. Investing in Social Media: How can marketers success of these programs using metrics that resonate demonstrate success and improve the overall with the company’s C-suite. investment in social media initiatives in the future? 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 4
  • Section 2: Defining the Objective Methodology The Social Media Marketing Funnel Survey data for the 2012 update of Marketing- Marketers often have multiple objectives for their social Profs’ State of Social Media Marketing report media programs. When evaluating these common objec- was collected in two distinct phases: tives, it turns out that they correspond with the stages of a typical sales funnel. Starting at the top of the funnel, 91% Phase 1 kicked off in November 2011 with of marketers list “brand awareness” as one of the core qualitative interviews from select social media objectives of their social media program. The percentage experts as recognized in the larger market- of marketers targeting objectives related to downstream ing community. In order to make the insights activities, including increasing purchase consideration from this report more grounded and action- (57%), driving direct sales online (46%) and offline (33%) oriented, we identified “hot topics” from these and driving CRM activities (31%), decreases as we move interviews that are currently relevant for pro- further down the sales funnel. fessionals working in social media. Their input was incorporated into the survey and served In addition to the fact 91% of marketers cite brand aware- as a guide for the topics that will be covered ness as one of the objectives of their social media pro- in the 2012 series of reports. grams, 66% cite “increasing positive mentions of their brand online” as one of the objectives. This supplements The experts interviewed represent a cross sec- the larger goal of brand awareness, since personal recom- tion of social media professionals including mendations from a trusted network of friends and family independent consultants, writers and editors, has the benefit of driving awareness of the brand virally. researchers, platform representatives, and client-side practitioners. The second most common objective, driving visitors to brand websites (78%), serves as further evidence of the • Experts: fact that marketers are focused on filling the top of the Mark Amtower, Amtower & Company funnel through social media. Driving website traffic is a Rebecca Corliss, HubSpot logical and natural outcome of increased brand aware- Jason Falls, Social Media Explorer ness. It is also significantly easier to measure the impact Ann Handley, MarketingProfs of increased site traffic on the bottom line than it is to Nichole Kelly, Full Frontal ROI measure the impact of brand awareness on business per- Matt Magee, SearchEngineLand formance. To this end, it is important that marketers rec- Tom Martin, HelpMyBrand.com ognize the inherent challenges in calculating the ROI of brand awareness. Consider, for example, the challenges Jeff Rohrs, ExactTarget) in calculating the ROI of a television advertisement or de- Jordan Viator Slabaugh, Spredfast termining the value of sponsoring a sports venue. It can Aaron Strout, WCG be done, but these calculations are not linear and need DJ Waldow, Waldow Social to account for external factors that are difficult to isolate. Aaron Weber, Inventi“...social media increases the likelihood for Phase 2 began in February 2012 with theconsumers to put your product into their launch of a survey to MarketingProfs readers.consideration set.”–Aaron Strout, WCG Screeners required people to indicate they 57% of social media marketers cite “Increasing purchase have social media marketing responsibilities consideration of the brand” as another common objec- in their current professional role. In total, tive. This objective serves as the bridge between brand 459 marketers made it through the initial awareness and direct sales and is an area where social set of screeners. Of those that passed the media shines according to Aaron Strout, WCG, “social screeners, 256 (56%) completed the entire media increases the likelihood for consumers to put your 20-minute survey. product into their consideration set.” 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 5
  • Common Social Media Business Objectives (Multi-Select) Brand awareness 91% Driving visitors to brand websites 78% Creating community around the brand 74% Increasing positive mentions of brand online 66% Increasing purchase consideration of brand 57% Showcasing thought leadership to target audience 55% Customer service 47% Driving sales to online sources 46% Marketing research: Consumer insight for marketing 40% Driving sales to offline sources 33% Building your customer file for CRM 31% Product research: Consumer feedback for product 26% Recruiting potential employees / job candidates 25% Source: MarketingProfs 2012 Social Media Survey, February 2012. Chart Base: 256 marketers. The lowest-ranked objectives of this study were recruit- “Anybody can post a Tweet or a status update on ment, CRM and surveying customers for market or prod- Facebook, but the brands and people who are uct research. This lack of emphasis on social media as being the most successful are really taking into a research tool suggests that marketers may think like account who their audience is, what they care Henry Ford, who famously said, “If I’d asked customers what they wanted, they would have said ‘a faster horse’.” about, and how they can stand out...” – Jordan Viator Slabaugh, Spredfast Whether or not Mr. Ford was right, marketers who aren’t looking to social media for insights about their customers Social media marketing efforts can also do double duty are likely missing out some key benefits of gathering this here: building brand awareness and engagement while kind of data. One major strength of social media is its abil- contributing to research goals. Consumers engage with ity to give brands access to groups and communities of brands that interact with them—those that actively seek consumers interested in their brand. These communities their comments and ask questions. Polls and quizzes can can easily be leveraged to provide input on a brand’s prod- be used to both engage the public and gather data for ucts and positioning. This feedback can give marketers product or marketing purposes. clues about existing attitudes toward a brand or product, “Anybody can post a Tweet or a status update on Face- and can help them course-correct or change strategies. book, but the brands and people who are being the most successful are really taking into account who their audi-“You can do a lot of ethnography through linguis- ence is, what they care about, and how they can standtics in social [media], because it’s mostly a text- out,” says Jordan Viator Slabaugh, Spredfast. “Whetherbased medium.” –Tom Martin, HelpMyBrand.com it’s creating new conversations that haven’t taken place, Some consumer feedback happens publicly, while other designing custom applications (contests, polls, etc.) or crucial information requires more nuanced methods. “You offering an interactive experience for people to give feed- can do a lot of ethnography through linguistics in social back and their own content.” [media], because it’s mostly a text-based medium,” says Tom Martin, HelpMyBrand.com. “You can get into the Primary Objectives Impact Measurement mind of a consumer…you can play out hunches, and then More than anything, the primary objective companies set back them up with statistical data.” for their social media programs determine how measurable 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 6
  • Primary Social Media Objective Brand awareness 24% Creating community around the brand 21% Showcasing thought leadership to target audience 11% Increasing purchase consideration of brand 11% Driving visitors to brand websites 10% Driving sales to online sources 8% Driving sales to offline sources 5% Increasing positive mentions of brand online 4% Customer service 3% Marketing research: Consumer insight for marketing 2% Building your customer file for CRM 1% Recruiting potential employees / job candidates 0% Product research: Consumer feedback for product 0% Source: MarketingProfs 2012 Social Media Survey, February 2012. Chart Base: 256 marketers.The truth is, depending on what you’re doing, it “We know better than to walk into a networkingcould be any one of those three things …all [are] event with our megaphone turned on, screamingvalid objectives.”–Matt Magee, SearchEngineLand about our product because if we do, we’re going to be asked to leave because it’s not the appropriate the program will be. Therefore, a marketer’s ability to mea- environment... So, that’s kinda what social me- sure the return on their social media investments effec- dia is in a nutshell. It’s a networking event where tively begins with a clear understanding of the objectives you go, you hang out, you participate and pro- at the onset. Some objectives, like direct sales, are easy vide value over time. If you show up and you have to quantify. Others, like building community around the a presence and people know you, if you provide brand, are significantly harder to link to ROI and require value to them, then they like you. If they know you contextual or indirect methods of measurement. and they like you and you do that consistently over “People used to want Fans on Facebook. Then time then they trust you. And when they know, like they realized what you want is engagement. After, and trust you, they buy from you.”–Jason Falls, they realized what you want is ROI, for people to Social Media Explorer engage and then follow-through and buy things. Of the marketers surveyed, 13% indicated that direct The truth is, depending on what you’re doing, it sales was the primary objective of their social media pro- could be any one of those three things …all [are] grams, but these marketers tend to be less experienced valid objectives.”–Matt Magee, SearchEngineLand compared to the 24% whose primary objective was brand Marketers face a balancing act when it comes to the awareness. Although the simplest way to demonstrate emphasis on measurability because choosing to focus only ROI of social media is by driving direct sales, more ex- on objectives that can be easily tied to revenue can result perienced social media marketers (as we identified as in the use of social media tactics that have only short-term marketers with at least 3 years professional experience in return. For example, the recent focus on measuring ROI social media and 6 years of overall marketing experience) in social media appears to have driven some marketers to place direct sales at the top of their list of priorities. So, that’s kinda what social media is in a nutshell. However, this may require marketers to become overly It’s a networking event where you go, you hang aggressive with their messaging in an environment that out, you participate and provide value over time. does not typically welcome a “hard sell” approach. –Jason Falls, Social Media Explorer 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 7
  • are more likely to focus on long-term strategic goals, such form.” Thought leadership could be seen as a refinementas community building, brand awareness and demonstrat- of brand awareness. Building a brand’s reputation foring thought leadership. thought leadership increases traffic, positive mentions and increases the level of regard by both customers andCompanies may have a difficult time quantifying the ROI prospective customers.of social media with regard to brand awareness, but astrong ability to measure secondary objectives suggest “You’ve got to be extremely attractive to thethat marketers are zeroing in on ways to evaluate socialmedia’s effectiveness. For example, increased traffic to market niche you’re going after.”–Mark Amtower, Amtower & Companythe website is something 68% of marketers say they canmeasure effectively. Increasing purchase consideration and driving sales bothJust behind brand awareness and creating community, fall lower on the list of primary objectives for social media.showcasing thought leadership was cited by 11% of mar- This isn’t to say these are not important, but making salesketers as their primary objective in social media programs. the endgame for social media efforts may be missing“You’ve got to be extremely attractive to the market niche some critical steps in the marketing process—namelyyou’re going after,” says Mark Amtower, Amtower & Com- portraying your brand as one with which people feel goodpany. “You need to develop your thought leadership plat- about conducting business. 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 8
  • Section 3: Delivering to the C-SuiteIn order to secure the resources necessary to implement nels also starts further down the conversion funnel. Whentheir social media plans, marketers increasingly need asked which measurements companies use to determineto translate social media gains into the language of the the relative effectiveness of different online marketingC-suite. Their criteria for measuring effectiveness ranges tactics, marketers rank customer engagement first atfrom simple customer engagement (i.e., Likes, comments, 53%, followed closely by acquisition and lead generationRetweets, etc.) and brand engagement, to acquisition, (48%), and direct revenue measures (29%).lead generation, and direct revenue measures. Thechallenge for today’s social media marketers is that they Site Traffic: The Bridge Betweenneed to demonstrate positive ROI to upper managementin the form of sales, while their primary objectives (i.e., Fortunately for social media marketers, measuring directbrand awareness) are challenging to define and hard to traffic also ranks as an important metric for management.quantify. Marketers are held accountable to the bottom Site traffic is something marketers can easily measure,line despite the fact their programs are focused on, and especially when compared to objectives like brand aware-likely optimized to, activities that drive prospects to the ness and ROI. Since increased site traffic represents atop of the sales funnel where they are later passed off natural progression, and is the logical outcome of suc-to other channels that carry the burden of converting cessful brand awareness initiatives, this secondary dataprospects into customers. point may well be the most effective means by which mar- keters can quantify and demonstrate the effectiveness ofPart of the challenge for social media is that it is measured awareness-building efforts.alongside other online marketing channels where the di-rect path to conversion is linear. Channels like search, Moreover, marketers are becoming more intentional aboutemail, and affiliate marketing all have established and integrating their social media initiatives with other chan-logical paths to conversion. However, each of these chan- nels, a topic that will be covered more in depth in Section 5 Measures that are EXTREMELY and QUITE IMPORTANT to company/client’s management when considering the allocation of resources to social media Brand awareness / recognition 78% Direct traffic to brand website 71% Return on marketing investment (ROI) 66% Search engine placement 63% Number of sales leads 57% Customer retention 55% Consumer sentiment 55% Engagement measures (comments, Likes, Retweets, Check-ins) 54% Customer insights 51% Number of Likes, fans, followers, subscribers, etc. 49% Topline sales 48% Customer satisfaction / Net promoter score 45% Customer lifetime value 41% Customer service response time 38% Quantity / Quality of crowd sourced content 37% Share of voice 36% Number of downloads (e.g., whitepaper, app) 35% Source: MarketingProfs 2012 Social Media Survey, February 2012. Chart Base: 256 marketers. 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 9
  • of this whitepaper. Metrics that can be easily measured cess, they also represent diagnostic opportunities for mar-through other channels, such as direct sales and search keters to determine if they are doing a good job or not atengine placements, are yardsticks that are becoming driving higher-level objectives. For example, getting moremore important to both marketers and management in people to download a whitepaper indicates that the top-light of the challenges associated with measuring ROI. ics addressed in the whitepaper resonate with prospectsTaking an integrated approach helps realize the unique and that the messages used to drive awareness are effec-capabilities of social media in driving increased brand tive. Increasing the share of voice indicates similar prog-awareness while leveraging these other channels to move ress resonating with Business-to-Consumer audiences.people along the conversion cycle. In essence, integrating When it comes to customer-centric metrics, consumersocial media marketing efforts with other channels allevi- sentiments, insights, retention and satisfaction outweighates the need social media to focus every action directly numerical indicators (number of subscribers, likes, fans,at driving a sale. etc.)—and even customer service response time—in their importance to leadership.It’s Not All About the Downloads This focus on higher-level metrics indicates that manage-Simple social media measures are not particularly attrac- ment is more interested in driving topline results thantive to executive management. The measurements con- looking at intermediate metrics of success. Managementsidered least important to the C-suite include the number is looking to improve the overall impression of their brandsof downloads (e.g. whitepaper, app), share of voice, and through social media and promote this positive sentimentthe quantity and quality of user-generated content. While to a broad audience.these measures may be indicative of some types of suc- 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 10
  • Section 4: The Measurement GapIf some of the most measurable elements of a social This inferiority complex, so to speak, is likely due to themedia tactic—likes, clicks, downloads, and so on—are extreme gap between the importance senior executivesthe least important in terms of demonstrating value to place on two specific metrics, and the ability of market-management, then marketers have to find ways of bridging ers to accurately measure them. When it comes to brandthis gap. So just how wide is the gap between what awareness, 78% of marketers said it is important to ex-management wants and what marketers can measure? ecutive leadership, but just 32% of them feel they can actually assess this. Similarly, 66% said ROI is importantMarketers’ ability to measure certain elements is, in some to the decision-makers, but only 28% feel they can ac-ways, canceled out by how unimportant those components curately demonstrate the connection. But, there is hope!are to management. Likes, re-tweets, check-ins and Driving traffic is one objective that marketers and man-comments certainly indicate that a campaign is getting agement can agree upon. A full 68% of marketers saysome traction. They are also the most straightforward they can quantify it, and it’s high on the list of metrics thatcustomer-driven metrics from a measurement standpoint, management is looking for.but if they can’t be clearly linked to increased site traffic orconversions, chances are they will be dismissed by those Increased traffic is just one outcome of building brandwith the purse strings. awareness, but when it’s combined with other factors, like improved search engine placement, marketers can make aOnly 4% of marketers surveyed say they are “excel- strong case that brand awareness is improving. Secondarylent” at measuring the impact of social media on metrics that can be tied directly to conversion can serve ascompany performance, with another 16% saying they respectable proxies for a brand awareness measurement,do an “above average” job at this. That means the until more robust tools can be implemented.majority of marketers (80%) feel they perform at av- In the same vein, one path to a more complete ROI mea-erage levels or below in this regard. surement is through integrating social media with other The Measurement Gap ABLE TO MEASURE EFFECTIVELY IMPORTANT TO MANAGEMENT 32% Brand awareness / recognition 78% 28% Return on marketing investment (ROI) 66% 22% Customer retention 55% 15% Customer lifetime value 41% 31% Consumer sentiment 55% 34% Number of sales leads 57% 22% Customer satisfaction / Net promoter score 45% 25% Topline sales 48% 38% Customer insights 51% 24% Share of voice 36% 55% Search engine placement 63% 31% Customer service response time 38% 33% Quantity / Quality of crowd sourced content 37% 68% Direct traffic to brand website 71% 65% Engagement measures (comments, Likes, Retweets) 54% 53% Number of downloads (e.g., whitepaper, app) 35% 78% Number of Likes, fans, followers, subscribers, etc. 49% Source: MarketingProfs 2012 Social Media Survey, February 2012. Chart Base: 256 marketers. 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 11
  • marketing channels like email and search. These chan-nels usually have well-established means of calculating “At the end of the day, if you can measureROI and can help collect evidence that social media is customers generated from social media, you’vecontributing to the success of the company. won.”–Rebecca Corliss, HubSpotMarketing software company HubSpot was cited by experts really powerful and helps me justify the time I’m spendingand survey respondents alike as being one of the most on social.” In fact, in this regard, the focus of socialsophisticated and effective social media and marketing media may need to shift from a direct impact on ROI to antools in existence. Integrating social media efforts with ability to amplify other, more traditional direct marketingemail and search marketing helps HubSpot effectively methods.measure the ROI of their social media efforts. “At theend of the day, if you can measure customers generated It’s important for companies to make sure the right toolsfrom social media, you’ve won,” shared Rebecca Corliss, are in place to bridge this measurement gap. This will en-HubSpot. “We measure the traffic, leads, and sales that sure they can tie social media objectives to the strategywe’ve generated through social media specifically and and tactics they’re using and have the metrics to backtrack social’s impact on other channels as well. That’s it up. 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 12
  • Section 5: Measurement ToolsTo understand the gap between what management wants “A lot of times there’s confusion between monitoring toolsand what marketers can measure, it’s important to and measurement tools. They’re very different,” saysconsider the tools being used. These tools fall primarily Nichole Kelly, Full Frontal ROI. “Many times the measure-into the two categories: free and paid services. ments in your monitoring tool are not connected to rev- enue, so you’re not getting the full picture.”It’s not surprising that free tools are the most frequentlyused. Two-thirds of marketers consistently use free “Many times the measurements in your monitoringanalytics software. Services like Google Analytics and tool are not connected to revenue, so you’re notYouTube Analytics fall into this category, as do free buzz- getting the full picture.”–Nichole Kelly, Full Frontal ROImonitoring services like Google Alerts, TweetDeck andTechnorati. Paid Services: Worth the Investment?The problem with these free services is that, while they What’s the difference, or added benefit, of paid servicesoffer many methods of monitoring interactions, such as if you can get about the same value from free ones?downloads, subscribes, and likes, they have fewer metrics Before that question can be addressed, there’s thethat can make the direct link to sales, which is what question of effectiveness: what does it mean and whichmanagement ultimately wants to see. measurements meet that standard?When it comes to paid measurement tools, the usage rate This is a critical discussion because this is where the rubberamong marketers plummets. Most marketers—roughly meets the road. Everything—from the objectives of thethree-fourths—have never used paid analytics software or marketing department, to management’s expectations, topaid buzz-monitoring services. the measurement tools—must align to result in a truly effective campaign with clearly demonstrable value to theWhen you’re looking for the drivers that move a consumer bottom line.from brand awareness to purchase, it can get prettycomplicated. This means that the measurement process “It’s easy for social media consultants to come in and talkis complicated as well. It requires sophisticated and about building up a social media presence,” says Aaronintegrated measurement tools beyond the data marketers Weber, Inventi, “but because those platforms don’t crosscan obtain from most free services. out into the broader web…it’s easy to say ‘it’s working, Tools/Tactics Used To Measure Social Media Efforts NEVER USED USE FREQUENTLY Paid buzz-monitoring service (e.g., Radian6, 72% Visible Technologies, etc.) 10% Paid analytics software (e.g., Adobe Omniture, 72% IBM Coremetrics, etc.) 12% Scientific control / exposed surveys of friends/fans/ 63% connections to determine effectiveness 6% Polls of social media friends/fans/connections 54% to estimate effectiveness 7% 25% Tracking clicks and re-posts/-tweets (e.g., bit.ly) 39% Free buzz-monitoring service (e.g., Google Alerts, 22% TweetDeck, Technorati, etc.) 49% Free analytics software (e.g., Google analytics, 10% YouTube Analytics, etc.) 67% Source: MarketingProfs 2012 Social Media Survey, February 2012. Chart Base: 256 marketers. 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 13
  • people are engaged,’ without deriving any further value. focus on the cost per metric for all of the core traditionalThey’re addressing an emotional, not a financial need.” advertising metrics because they have a history.”If paid services can provide the breadth and depth of The fact that companies value those measurements thatanalysis, as well as tools to make the connections between are directly related to the integration of social media withROI and a particular social media program overall, the other channels, such as website traffic and search enginebenefit will outweigh the costs. placement, shows that they are on the right track. This mindfulness of the interconnectivity of various marketingSocial Media as Amplifier channels to drive consumers along the path to conversion, toSocial media is the first runner in the customer move them down the funnel, is a step in the right direction.engagement relay. Moving toward measurement of The story behind the chart is still the mostits ROI requires integration with other channels that important piece.”–Aaron Weber, Inventihave a built-in ability to track sales. This necessitatescomprehensive pre-planning and hand-off points, in Most marketers, however, are not innately analysts. Work-addition to objectives for each individual channel. It also ing with complicated metrics may not come naturally, so itmeans putting in place the right measurement tools and makes sense to invest in more sophisticated services thatwatching the right metrics. expedite this process. Unfortunately, justifying the budget for comprehensive, paid services, when the focus is typi-“We translate everything to sales revenue and cost. We cally on the need for more consumer-facing resources, iscan compare the cost per impression, lead, click, in-bound a struggle.link, etc., and we can compare it to traditional media,online advertising, PR, and SEO,” says Nichole Kelly, Full “The marketing department ends up being an army of one,”Frontal ROI. “We can typically show that social media is says Aaron Weber, Inventi. “The biggest problem is they canamplifying what those channels are already doing at a collect all this data, but somebody still has to go throughlower cost. We start there, and then we start looking at it. The story behind the chart is still the most importanthow we can connect to the revenue and sales picture. We piece.” 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 14
  • Section 6: Investing in Social MediaLooking ahead to the next 12 months, investment in socialmedia overall is not in question. However, the investments “Instead, a lot of people are thinking aboutthat companies are making may shift to focus on specific those channels separately. I’m hoping marketersapproaches more than others. will think more of an integrated strategy, not just these different channels as silos.”The largest financial increases will likely be seen in –DJ Waldow, Waldow Socialstrategies that involve participation in online communitiesand consumer engagement via brand social networking SEO marketing and email marketing have better establishedpages. There will also be a larger emphasis on marketing means of pinpointing the origin of a sales conversion,campaigns that supplement social media with multi-media which social media currently lacks. Addressing how socialcontent, like online video and blogs, as well as tools that media can work to amplify and strengthen other channelsincrease social sharing. will allow it to bring more to the table with regard overall marketing success.Marketers plan to continue directing investments to the“Big Four”—the platform heavyweights Facebook, Twitter, “There’s a huge missed opportunity in…not using email toYouTube and LinkedIn. SEO and email lists will also see power social and social to power email,” says DJ Waldow,increased funding because they have traditional metrics Waldow Social. “Instead, a lot of people are thinking aboutthat can be directly correlated to ROI. These are especially those channels separately. I’m hoping marketers will thinkimportant with regard to entry points (in the case of SEO), more of an integrated strategy, not just these differentand consumer retention and relationship building (in the channels as silos.”case of email marketing). The third and fourth priorities in the lineup are improvingTop Priorities for 2012 Social Media Efforts measurement and improving conversions. Marketers areThe top priorities for marketers in the coming year are in- acutely aware of the need to justify social media expendi-creasing presence across social media platforms, followed tures with a clear ROI. This shows that the focus is now onclosely by integrating social media with other online mar- tracking social media’s role in the funnel process by us-keting channels. Clearly, bridging the measurement gap is ing better measurement tools, and, as a result, increasestop-of-mind for many social media marketers. conversions. What are the TOP priorities for your social media efforts in 2012? (Select Top 3) Increasing presence across social media platforms 38% Integrating social media with other online marketing channels (e.g., search, email, website, etc.) 37% Improving measurement (e.g., ROI, analytics, sentiment, etc.) 35% Improving conversions 30% Increasing the frequency of content publishing 28% Developing / improving social media management processes 27% Getting the right tools and technologies in place 21% Integrating social media with offline marketing channels (e.g., direct mail, in-store, TV, print, etc.) 21% Improving customer insight 16% Growing / training our team 14% Integrating with sales systems (e.g., CRM, POS, Lead Management) 12% Lowering costs 5%Source: MarketingProfs 2012 Social Media Survey, February 2012. Chart Base: 256 marketers. 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 15
  • Section 7: ConclusionPresence is no longer the name of the game—it’s now tools to help them interpret metrics and tie them directlyabout bridging the measurement gap between brand to their objectives will make marketers more efficient atawareness and ROI. The marketers who continue to expand moving consumers through the sales funnel.social media presence while integrating those efforts with The marketers who understand that closing the measure-more trackable channels, and then connecting data dots ment gap depends on the ability to interface with otherfor the decision-makers, are those that will see the most online marketing channels will create the most naturalimpact on their company’s bottom line in 2012. path for consumers to move from awareness to purchase.Lowering costs was the lowest rung on the priority ladder The bottom line is that if marketers can grow awareness,for social media marketers, but they’re looking to boost improve measurement and connect social media metricsthe bottom line in other ways. Rather than looking for to conversions, then they will have justified to manage-line item cuts, they’re looking to provide greater return ment why they should increase their investment in socialon marketing dollars spent. Using sophisticated, premium media marketing. 2012 State of Social Media Marketing | 16