There is still a lot to learn about how to measure the ROI from Social Media. But definitely something that needs to be explored and understood going forward because it will not be going away. And every industry is different. For instance, in the financial services there are a lot of compliance concerns as to what you can and should say about products, guarantees, and so on.
The general consensus seems to be that many in the financial services industry feel unsure of how to utilize social media in regards to their practices. There are multiple schools of thought when it comes to social media and business, and I wanted to address two of the most prevalent ones.
The first school of thought is to actively pursue sales via social media — everything from promoting products and services via websites, blogs, email or Twitter, to using YouTube or other social video sites to reach new clientele, to using sites like LinkedIn for prospecting and lead generation. No matter how you cut it, businesses have wholeheartedly jumped on the social media bandwagon in an effort to carve out their piece of the profits. And it’s working, too. Check out some of these stats:
- 500 years of YouTube videos are watched on Facebook every day
- 99 percent of U.S. online specialty retailers use YouTube, up from 93 percent in 2012
- 70 percent of business-to-consumer marketers have acquired a customer through Facebook
- Facebook users share 2.5 billion pieces of content on the site each day (Yes, that’s a “b” — as in billion!)
- 43 percent of U.S. marketers have found a customer through LinkedIn
- Twitter users send 400 million tweets each day
- 50 percent of technology companies have acquired a customer through Twitter
The second school of thought is a little less in your face about the topic of social media. These users subscribe to a different theory. Instead of using social media to directly sell products, these businesses prefer to use their social media marketing more passively — to educate and inform. This strategy aims to demonstrate a business’s industry experience and expertise, and therefore develop their personal brand.