There have been many references to ROI in terms of social media. A couple of my favorites are:
- Return on Influence
- Return on Interaction
There has been a lot of discussion recently about the Community Manager position.And the article in the WSJ about the Deloitte study brought out many from the industry in defense of communities. My take was that it underlines the importance of the community manager role. Brian Solis recently had an article on the new MarComm. He highlights why companies need to start considering marketing in relational terms.
A friend that’s a VP of Marketing of an Open Source solution says it provides 12x the valuation at his company.
Here are a list of returns:
- Humanize the company by providing a voice
- Nurture the community & encourage growth
- Communicate directly with the customers
- Connect customers to appropriate internal departments
- Ensure that messaging will connect
- Build brand awareness through word of mouth
- Lower market research costs
- Add more points in the purchase cycle
- Provide support to customers that have fallen thru the cracks
- More satisfied customers because they’ve been involved with product development
- Shorten length of product development cycle
- Build public relations for brand with influentials in the industry
- Identify strengths & weaknesses of competitors
- Collaborate & partner with related organizations
- Provide industry trends to the executive level
- Identify popular problems in user work flow
- Communicate use case developments to team
- Represent the user experience to organization
Your first comment will be – there aren’t any numbers there! You know your organization best so I’ll let you decide what value each of those offers. There are other factors to consider before deciding if you need a community manager, but I hope that that list starts you thinking about the value of the position.
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*cross posted at Marketing 2.0