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New Social Media Metric: Impressions?

March 25th, 2009
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Eric Anderson, VP of Emerging Media at White Horse,  made some interesting points about what social media metrics marketers should and should not be measuring based on what he sees going on in the marketplace.

Here are some pointers I gleaned from his webinar, “The Only 3 Social Media Metrics That Matter:”

1. Don’t over quantify

Tools that measure social media are taking a cue from the web analytics industry. The problem is a company’s true social media presence is far too nuanced to be captured by measurement software.

2. Don’t focus on direct response

Marketers shouldn’t be looking at direct response actions that can be driven from social media. It destroys the real potential of social media. The purpose should be engaging with people in places they like to be, not turning them off by trying to make them go somewhere else.

3. Don’t freak out about ROI

He doesn’t mean don’t measure ROI. Marketers need to acknowledge that the ROI is much more complicated than anything that can be measured, Anderson says.

It’s important to recognize that social media – when considered a component of marketing – is so relatively inexpensive that it does not require the ROI metric.

So, what does he think is the right kind of metric for social media? Impressions!

Pretend that each social media interaction is an impression.

If measured that way, it could tell you: Will this program extend my message to more people than if I didn’t engage? If I add a social media component to my campaign will it add more impressions than if I did not?