Earlier today, I popped along to MeasurementCamp (MMC) for a meeting with some of London’s top social media brains. This was my third or fourth MMC and it was good to see the progress made in the past year – there is a growing sense of what we’re capable of measuring, and now the focus has turned to how to structure that most effectively. Here are some of my thoughts springing from the discussion – all things we at We Are Social do and have in mind already, but MeasurementCamp was very good at crystallising them into a best practice-friendly format:
- Framing process clearly: Different channels produce different results – e.g. a customer support blog is going to generate fewer direct sales than a viral for a special offer. Dismissing those who misunderstand what a blog can or cannot do is not particularly constructive – it should be up to us to explain the process of a social media campaign and the likely effects it will have, to get realistic and significant goals agreed.
- Measure early, measure often: Measurement should not be just done at the end of campaign but as part of the process throughout to judge the difference a campaign makes. And wherever possible we should benchmark it against competitor brands.
- Not getting seduced by data: Because there are so many metrics available, grand plans for some ultra losing the wood for the trees is easy to do. Going overboard with too many numbers bamboozles us as well as the client and can make you lose sight of what works and what needs improvement. Pick & choose what you measure at the start and stick to it.
Further to the last one, there were some good ideas from the group, the idea that we shouldn’t be afraid to resort to the forms of measurement that the traditional advertising and marketing industries use, such as surveys or phone polls. These of course come with their own flaws but they still have many practical uses. And as with all these things, numbers can never tell the whole story, but they’re a good start in getting there.