Social Media Marketing Metrics in 2010

December 28, 2009

As Chief Marketing Officers develop their social media marketing strategy for 2010, they are demanding business results. That's the message from a CMO Group/Bazzarvoice survey,

In 2009, 89% of CMOs tracked social media's impact by using standard metrics such as site traffic, pageviews, and number of fans. However, CMOs expect that in 2010 top metrics will track more closely to P&L business goals––not just Web-related goals. The study forecasts the growth of adoption of the top three metrics in 2010, as follows:

  • A 333% increase in tracking revenue
  • A 174% increase in tracking conversion
  • A 150% increase in tracking average order value

Such a shift in measurement expectation is significant. CMOs indicate a 300% year-over-year increase in 2010 in the number of companies that plan to measure social media's impact on conversion and a 400% increase in the number of companies that will track social media's direct impact on revenues.

The 2009's financial crisis probably did social media some good. Not that you need a ton of budget, but when competing for scarce budget alongside more traditional projects is a creative constraint. As social media marketing matures, it will become a facet of marketing overall and it will be harder to spot a campaign that isn't social. Part of that maturing is you can't manage what you can't measure. Part of it driving activity that drives traditional metrics, like how you can drive conversions with LeadShare.

Social media marketers should get ahead of this curve. If you know you will eventually be accountable for traditional metrics, start iterating as soon as you can to find models that work. And volunteer to report these metrics before they are volunteered to you. This will require that you actively engage other parts of the marketing organization and give them stakeholdership in your outcomes. Take a look at your 2010 campaigns, reconsider your metrics, and incrementally realign your activities with the core of the marketing function.

Ross Mayfield is an advisor to Slideshare, co-founder of Socialtext & @ross on Twitter.