Social ROI – Find out why you’re not getting any!

There are many challenges faced by today’s business owner. In addition to the things you learn in school like, cash flow, inventory, pricing, policies and all that other fun stuff, you now are concerned with the ROI of your social media campaign.

This is one topic that even polarizes the professional marketing community with recommendations at both ends of the spectrum. This is disappointing since business owners look to us for the best advice, and hearing two different messages can be cause for concern or even doubt.

The position we take, is the same one we take when it comes to outbound advertising, ‘it takes two to tango’! Now, a quick disclaimer…I’m no dancer, but I feel the analogy works here. You can dance by yourself, and some people can make it look good, but with the right partner, everything comes together.

Those who say there is no room in Social for ‘direct response’ ads are wrong. There, I said it, but here’s the proof:

The number one reason people gave, garnering 40% of the audience polled, as the reason for ‘Liking’ a business page is ‘to receive discounts and promotions’. Nothing new here, folks are just trying to get the best deal, and stretch their dollars in a difficult economy. Are these loyal fans that love to look at your funny posts, or engage in a conversation about your new organic products that save the Earth? Maybe, maybe not, the point is if you’re not offering discounts and promotions on your page, you’re not talking to a large majority of your fans.

However, in a very close second, with 39% of the audience poll responding: ‘to show my support for the company to others’. Well, I’ll be darned, that is the other side of the argument, and I believe proves the point.

You need to post so that both the analytic side of your fans brains, who join to save money, and the emotional side of your fans brains who join to show support get what their looking for.

The ROI from the discounts and promotions you offer can be clearly monitored and tracked. The other measure you need to be aware of is ROE, or return on engagement. When you look at your page for both of these measure, you won’t be ‘disappointed’ when someone comments on your latest ‘cute cat pic’. You can take pleasure in knowing that something you posted meant enough for someone to comment on it.

Now here’s where I think we can all agree. The return on engagement is ultimately more valuable because the more engaged a fan is, the more loyal they become, and the more likely the are to do business with you, thus feeding the ROI.

NEW TO PALM BEACH – does a great job at keeping their social ROE score high!

So to recap, your social strategy should offer a balance between buying incentives, and engagement incentives. Learn to measure not only your ROI, but your ROE. As you increase your ROE, your direct response messages will have a better platform, and you will see the results in your bottom line.
For more social media strategy please contact John Garcia at jgarcia@bdigitalagency.com

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John Garcia is managing partner and digital director of Baldrica Advertising and Marketing. He started working in the industry 25 years ago at a Fortune 500 advertising agency in New York City. Over time, he mastered the art of integrating TV, radio, print, billboard, cable, and direct mail with digital for maximum results. He spearheaded several digital initiatives during his seven-year tenure at The Palm Beach Post before moving to Baldrica.

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