The last day of official Social Media Week ended on my 6th day in Mumbai. The last session at Blue Frog, a venue famous for hosting an array of international performers such as Angelique Kidjo and Armand van Buren, was a panel discussion about how brands can monetise their presence on social media. This monetisation topic has been one of the recurring themes of SMWMumbai.
As shown in the pie chart above, 79% of marketers are now integrating social media in their communication strategies – as captured in the global Social Media Marketing Industry Report of 2013. Two related findings are that 74% of marketers do not outsource social media marketing efforts; and more than 60% of them spend 6 hours and above per week on social media. With this increased focus on social media marketing, it is now time for businesses to require justification for the investment.
Not surprisingly, social media monetisation, conversion rates, social media content harvesting, social business (not as defined by Nobel laureate Prof. Muhammad Yunus), social enterprise etc. are now constant buzz words as brands are now asking the hard questions related to social media ROI. The pie chart above shows that only 26% of marketers are able to measure social media marketing ROI, and this will increase the buzz even more. As the silver lining theory goes, there is an opportunity for digital agencies to focus on assisting brands with provision of ROI measurement solutions.
As pressure mounts to justify money and effort spent on social media, one hopes that this will not lead to undesirable practices.