Challenges in measuring social media

September 10, 2008 at 8:35 pm Leave a comment

Tom Watson of the Dummyspit blog has brought to my attention a new report (pdf) from the Society of New Communication Research that examines the elusive question about how to measure the influence and effectiveness of social media, such as blogs, podcasts, etc.

As the report states although social media is clearly changing “the way we think about media and influence … [companies] are still struggling to find effective metrics for deciding who are the influential players” (p.16).

The report summarises current measurement and evaluation practice as:

  • Top criteria for determining the relevance or influence of a blogger or podcaster are quality of content, relevance of content to the company or brand, and search engine rank.
  • For evaluating a person’s influence in online communities and social networks, the main measures are participation level, frequency of activity and prominence in the market or community.
  • About half the surveyed communicators formally measure their social media activities. Their goals are “to enhance relationships, improve the reputation of their businesses, drive customer awareness of their online activities and solicit customer comments and feedback.” (p.16)

There are certainly some valid points there – read Tom’s full post here,  just be aware of some of the more dodgy social media metrics that are out there…

Glenn

Entry filed under: Social media monitoring.

New portal on communications evaluation Writing better survey questions

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