82% of TV adverts generate negative ROI, according to the book The Social Media Management Handbook: Everything You Need to Know to Get Social Media Working in Your Business, written by a team of three from Accenture.
This begs the question: Why are we all so obsessed with social media ROI?
Given that the first TV ad was broadcast over 70 years ago, and social media has only really come to the forefront for business use in the last 5 or so years, it make little sense that brands and businesses are reluctant to invest in social media due to a lack of hard ROI statistics, but are happy to pour millions into TV advertising.
So why is this the case? I’m not really convinced that brands and businesses themselves understand why social media ROI is so fundamental to its adoption. Is it because the likes of Facebook and Twitter are still viewed to be ‘free’ thus there is a reluctance to invest? Or is it a case of waiting to see if someone comes up with the equivalent social media metric for what ‘reach’ is to PR?
To me, I think we’re obsessed with social media ROI because social media, unlike TV advertising, is so much more than just another channel.The smart brands and businesses want a social media strategy that includes measurements, KPIs and metrics that deliver value across the whole business, rather than just for PR, marketing or other one-off initiatives.
This type of adoption- social business– requires uptake from the top level down, cross market, cross department and cross discipline. And for businesses to invest in social media in this way, it’s vital to understand the value it can generate before taking that leap.
Becoming a social business, and using social media in a way that is potentially transformational to an organisation, requires heavy investment in both financial, resourcing and strategic terms. So for business to willingly adopt this model it’s wholly understandable to see why we’re all obsessed with social media ROI.