listen – laugh – love

A little taste of my Social Media love…

You’re Gonna Hear Me ROI

on October 31, 2013

We’ve spent so much time this semester discussing the need for businesses and companies to be plugged in and engaged on various social media platforms. We know that it’s important for brands to be out there and interacting with their audience – but what’s really in it for them?!

The answer to that question is simple – ROI. But wait a second…what’s ROI?!


According to Investopdia, return on investment (ROI) is “a performance measure used to evaluate the efficiency of an investment or to compare the efficiency of a number of investments.” So how does social media factor into the ROI equation? Well, it seems like businesses aren’t quite sure; they know that they need to be involved in social media, but can’t seem to figure out what they really want to gain from the engagement.

Having a goal as to what you want to measure is the biggest step your business can take towards gaining ROI results when it comes to social media. Here are a few examples of some actual business goals that social media can help your brand achieve:

  • Increased Brand Exposure
    • Watch your brand mentions and sentiment per reporting period.
  • Increased Website/Location Traffic
    • Take it a step further than just looking at likes, comments and shares; utilize analytic tools like Google Analytics to determine exactly how much traffic you thank social media for gaining your brand.
  • Increased Sales
    • After creating specific sales goals, focus on watching how many conversions social media is brining you.

With practice and patience, businesses can truly measure the benefit of social media on their bottom line. But, how can those businesses make sure they are doing all they can to gain the most benefit possible? Here are five tips on using social media to really increase your ROI:

  • Engage
    • People want to interact and create relationships with brands online – use things like product giveaways, social interaction and real replies to set you apart.
  • Be Authentic
    • Crowdsource content for in-house interviews and articles – ask your community for help when it comes to content. They can smell “faking it” from a mile away!
  • Keep Content Premium
    • Post the right kind of content to the right platform (Tweets are different than Facebook posts) and focus on making your followers feel like part of the brand family.
  • Integrate Real-Time Apps
    • Incorporate social media into everything you do – share buttons , comments, likes and reviews on homepages increase user engagement
  • Experiment
    • Fail and see what works – test tone, style and monetizing tools. Be careful though – don’t fail too many times or you will lose follower interest.


Essentially, your goal as a business is to become less business and more human. I’ve said it many times before, the human factor is the ONLY way to gain buy-in from this girl – and I’m pretty sure I’m not alone! Businesses need to focus on developing R.E.A.L. relationships with their audience – Reciprocal, Empathetic, Authentic and Long-lasting.

Businesses are finally realizing that, in order to compete with other companies, they must be active and engaged on all forms of various social platforms. Now, these businesses need to start focusing on the why behind the social media need – otherwise all of their efforts are for not and the powers at be will most likely lose interest in their social adventures.

Questions to Ponder:

  1. What types of social media goals do you think businesses should be setting?
  2. Do you think that social media can really help a brand’s ROI and bottom line? Why or why not?
  3. What would be your best suggestion to a business looking to increase ROI via social media?

Ta-ta for now!


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8 responses to “You’re Gonna Hear Me ROI

  1. Jason Belo says:

    Hi Lacee.

    Social media can definitely increase brand awareness and cash flow. Research by Nielsen linked the causality of social media activity with higher TV ratings. Dan Patton, VP of Digital Media for Viacom International Media Networks, said that pay-TV channels often lacked the direct relationship with the viewer. “Unless you have a very sophisticated CRM or data capture mechanism it’s really difficult to engage directly with your fans. He said you could use social media to overcome that and communicate directly to them.”

    Viacom’s MTV has increased brand awareness through social media for new shows leading to higher debut audiences. and Patton also said “Fans are coming to social and getting a chance to interact with the stars. We get the stars to watch and interact with them.”

    Some brands and entrepreneurs are having success monetizing social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook with the use of ads. Social media superstars such as Jenna Marbles, iJustine, Michelle Phan, Ray William Johnson, Toby Games and Philip DeFranco are leveraging their success by becoming YouTube partners and/or promoting brands to their viewers and subscribers on their channels. YouTube has set established an inexpensive platform for users to become millionaires by producing content and marketing it via …wait for it………….social media. Now that’s a ROI worth bragging about.

    • lutt09 says:

      Hi Jason!

      Thanks for the great information! After my project on Twitter and their advertising/marketing resources, I completely agree! There are so many resources out there for companies to really take a hold of and run straight to the bank with! Granted, everything takes a little practice and I think that companies are still trying to figure out their own personal benefits to living on social media. Only time will tell!

      Thanks for reading!

  2. seanburke4 says:

    Great post Lacee!

    To answer your question, yes, social media can absolutely show an ROI. More than anything, social media is like free advertising. Startups and established businesses alike can benefit from having a presence there. For a few weeks this past summer, my company’s Facebook page was getting more traffic than our website. If that doesn’t show value…I’m not sure what does!

    • lutt09 says:

      Hi Sean!

      I love that you pointed out the free factor of social media! I think that’s my favorite part of social media – that it’s free to use and is available for business all across the board. Mom and Pop stores to giant companies pretty much have the same tools at their fingertips.

      Thanks for reading!

  3. kblitch says:

    I think interaction and engagement needs to be your goal, at all times. This is how you’ll see ROI and the sales will come in. Social media can absolutely help a brand’s bottom line– I’ve witnessed it first hand. If all of your fans/followers do not live in the same area, social media is a great way to send a message (not a sales message, just in general) to all of those who are looking to talk to you. It also allows all of these followers to ask you questions when they may not have been able to get real time responses before. These are the things to keep in mind when posting– your content is one of the most important things, and always think like the people you want to have purchasing from you.

    • lutt09 says:

      Hi Kristin!

      I love that you pointed out that content is really one of the most important things you can do as a member of a social media OR public relations team. If you’re not feeding your followers quality content, they are bound to lose interest and you are bound to lose dollars! I also agree that social is a fantastic way to link together followers and fans from around the globe – to really make your company feel human.

      Thanks for reading!

  4. blduckworth says:

    My best suggestion for a business trying to increase ROI of social media is to engage with your existing followers. Crowdsource ideas, speak with them directly though posts, acknowledge the with comments, likes, and RT’s.

    • lutt09 says:

      Hi Blythe!

      I agree completely – those are all fantastic ideas for increasing your ROI using social media. I hope that businesses continue to accept social media and begin to really utilize it to the best of their abilities.

      Thanks for reading!

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