9 Digital Marketing Megatrends for 2018
9 megatrends across the 5 pillars of marketing today which every business should actionDownload Guide
I am fortunate in that I get to spend a lot of time with clients on a daily basis and my current portfolio includes 86 agencies. One increasingly frequent topic of discussion at meetings is measurement, ROI and social media in particular.
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Amongst clients across varying sectors I see a lot of focus on owned channels, and I believe the potential of big data enabled by social media is often underutilized. What’s more, with in-house teams growing their own capabilities, agencies will need to diversify where they add value.
Beyond owned, earned and paid are two such areas where consultancy and insight can add real value, and in this post I focus on the measurement of earned social media. Paid, with all its attribution models and programmatic buying, is another post altogether.
PR agencies have an advantage with earned social media, as they already have decades of relationship building experience with journalists and in creating content. Therefore, engaging with social communities and influential bloggers, for example, may come easier to a PR professional than perhaps advertisers. They also know to listen first and not to be the proverbial loud guy at the party - join the conversation, don’t broadcast.
But PR’s do need to step up their knowledge of paid, even if not to execute paid campaigns but to be able to converse on the integration of all activities. Especially as native advertising, in the form of sponsored content, is becoming more and more prevalent and indistinguishable alongside earned media.
I've put together a short list, which is by no means exhaustive and I welcome your comments to grow and develop this.
Sources of intelligence:
Always consider what the objectives are:
The right mix of what to measure will always depend on your key social media objectives, which in turn must always tie in with the wider business objectives.
I have seen communications strategies unaligned with the overarching businesses objectives, and doing so may well work from time to time, but it can jeopardise the longevity and perceived performance of an activity/campaign.
I would strongly recommend to start at the top, the business objectives, and then work your way down.
Below is a framework which I have put together that can be used as a rough guide. (Message me @eMannoia if you would like a blank framework to use and I can send you one.)
Here a sample framework I completed:
Ideally, you should use one measurement framework, but different metrics for different objectives. Where possible, utilizing metrics which the wider business employs such as sales, Net Promoter Scores (NPS), market share, footfall, ROI etc. will streamline reporting up to senior management and make it more effective. Always link results back to business objectives.
Be aware of some common pitfalls:
A holistic measurement solution should capture both quantitative and qualitative results, utilising social listening tools, social campaign execution tools, web traffic data and ideally sales figures. That’s when you can go beyond measuring simple outputs, and look at actual outcomes. This is when you can prove a return on your investment.
Multichannel integrated campaigns are almost the norm these days, so for a more sophisticated analysis of contribution one can also use econometric modelling. Besides correlation analysis and econometric modelling, market research is another tool which can determine behavioural shifts, changes in NPS and general awareness.
Also keep an eye on the absence of data and the corresponding insight derived from that, and conversely, do not simply measure data that’s readily available but perhaps not relevant. Once you have the results and look to interpret them remember, as Rob Clark put it, 'Not what, but so what and now what'.
What intelligence do you gather?
By eliot mannoia
Eliot currently consults clients on digital and social media strategy at IPG Mediabrands, along with the responsibility of aligning the agency’s paid, organic, content and strategic social offering. He previously provided strategic advice around mainstream and digital media to premium clients at Gorkana, part of the Cision Group, as account director and senior consultant. He brings over thirteen years of experience in marketing, digital and social media across the environment, technology and media sectors. Past clients include United Biscuits, Microsoft, Asics, Skype, Red Bull, Unilever and Starwood. You can see more of his work here or connect with Eliot on LinkedIn.
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