I nearly always get asked the same two questions by everyone from Fortune 500 corporations to individual entrepreneurs; “How much resources should I commit to social media marketing?” and “Where’s the ROI in social media marketing?
My answer to the first question is, “Remove the term social media from that sentence and ask me again.”… How does that make you feel… Kind of silly? Of course.
Well, social media marketing is only a new set of tools that allows us to marketing our products, services, companies, and ourselves with incredible efficiency, but it’s still marketing. And, in nearly every case, it’s absolutely free, minus only the labor and creativity you would have to put into conventional marketing anyway. So the correct answer is… “As Much As You Can Afford and then a little more!”
The second question comes at me as often and with amazing regularity “Where’s the ROI in social media?” To answer this question, I ask the asker to “Please give me several specific examples of extraordinary ROI they’ve had with thier conventional marketing.” And then I wait. After an uncomfortable amount silence or as come call it, “the pregnant pause”, I explain that again, social media marketing is the same as conventional marketing, only more. And of course I go on further to explain how to track your tweets, creating unique landing pages, driving to unpublished telephone numbers, Google Alerts & Analytics, Social Mention, Tweetdeck, Seesmic Desktop, Radian6, YouTube analytics, etc. Which leads me to explaining the importance of measuring. As I say in my book “You can’t manage what you don’t measure.”
All this leads me to The Social Media Bible, Second Edition, Part 3 and The ROI Of Social Media. Because I have been asked so many times about the ROI of social media, I included readers actual ROI stories in every one of the 42 chapters (minus the guide chapters in Part 2). When I sent out a request for these ROI stories on LinkedIn, I was pleased to see more than 100 incredible stories stream in. It’s positively amazing how creative, how, diligent, and how effect social media is in the hands of the American business person. The most difficult part of adding these stories to the second edition was which ones to choose. I was asked by editors at John Wiley & Sons to please not add anymore pages. I was told that at the 850 pages the book was already at,was the limit to being able to physically bind a book that large. Unfortunate, some of these stories were cut.
So, I would like to bring you many of the truly terrific stories of the ROI Of Social Media that was submitted, but couldn’t be added. I hope these inspire you in your quest for social media nirvana as much as they have inspired me.
Title: A Sweet Treat and a Tweet Lead to a Partnership
Background: LetsPartyMagazine.com is an online resource guide dedicated to helping users, from first-time hosts to entertaining aficionados, plan the perfect party. With how-to guides, DIY projects, recipes, and vendor directories, LetsPartyMagazine.com offers everything readers need to turn a social occasion into an event. The Phoenix-based company launched in 2009, with plans for national development as early as 2010.
To capture a larger audience of readers and advertisers, LetsPartyMagazine.com uses a targeted combination of SEO, online advertising, and social media sites. Like many businesses new to the social media scene, LetsPartyMagazine.com began with the basics: a Facebook page, a Google blog, a MySpace page, and, of course, a Twitter account. Through continued contact via social media outlets, LetsPartyMagazine.com directs new and return traffic to its site by offering members seasonal and holiday party information and relevant planning tools.
Preliminary indicators showed Facebook and Twitter to have the most immediate influence on unique and return traffic directed to the business website. As the number of updates and tweets increased, LetsPartyMagazine.com began to see significant growth in its number of fans and followers, and as much as 25% traffic referred by these social media outlets.
An anecdotal glimpse at the power of an ongoing social media campaign occurred on February 23, 2010, when Owner/Publisher Tracy Werner ordered a cup of ice cream.
As the adoptive mother of five, Werner has plenty of opportunity to share her personal party experiences with readers. On that particular day, Werner was hosting her daughter’s birthday party at a local indoor trampoline park when the kids stopped for a break and some Dippin’ Dots Ice Cream. Werner casually tweeted, “Enjoying my banana split @DippinDots while my daughter plays @GotJump”.
Within 30 minutes Werner was contacted by Dippin’ Dots Arizona requesting advertising rates and partnership information. A tweet, a dessert, and a deal in the space of an hour!