Ask a marketer about social media and they will sing praises, especially with the attention blogs, micro-blogs, and user-generated content apps are getting in mainstream media. But ask a marketer what’s the one thing that they will make them pause about going forward with social media and they will probably say “There are no credible metrics readily available.”
Well, that type of reply is not unfounded. I’ve talked to a lot of marketing folks and they say that they would be more comfortable if there was a data source on the metrics of social media sites like blogs. This is perhaps borne from the orientation of the senior marketing executives’ reliance on Nielsen for media data on traditional media.
Why are these metrics important? These numbers are needed to justify the effectiveness of the campaign and determine the Return on Investment (ROI) of marketing activities. Of course, when it comes to ROI, the higher the better.
So, how do we answer the age old question of where to obtain readily available metrics for blogs?
These days, it’s not that hard because most blogs install analytics tools like Google Analytics to collect data on basic stats about the blog. If these analytics tools are not installed, it’s easy to install them. Things get iffy when it comes to industry-wide data because there’s still no universally accepted source of data. (Well, maybe Google will make something like this in the future.)
Just remember, metrics are important to measure performance with quantitative goals. But If you ask me, you can be a successful blogger without wrapping yourself around the numbers.