SEW Live – Measuring Social Media

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The saying “all publicity is good publicity,” has, I think, been pretty much dismissed by now.  But to what degree, and in what instances?  Sage Lewis, founder and president of Sage Rock, considered those questions (among others) during his talk on “Measuring the Impact of Social Media” at yesterday’s SEW Live event.

One of Lewis’s first examples involved Digg and StumbleUpon.  While it’s true that being featured on those sites will raise your profile (or that of your company), Lewis pondered what sort of damage any negative comments could cause.  All those eyes . . .

And all that traffic to your site.  The Sage Rock founder labeled these things as “vague benefits,” and said that you should always question the identity of your visitors.  Businesses should also try to determine the visitors’ cost per acquisition, and consider if they will actually buy.

Yet you needn’t be a psychic to determine these things.  Lewis noted that stats are getting better – services can provide bar graphs or pie charts (whatever’s your pleasure) to display what items were clicked on and what feed readers people use.  He also mentioned FeedBurner, “the leading provider of media distribution and audience engagement services for blogs and RSS feeds,” by name.

Other sites that you should embrace, according to Lewis, include Flickr and Google Video.  This second service, in particular, makes some great statistics available (such as downloads and page views).  And, hey, it’s Google – you can’t go too wrong there.

Another Mountain View product to get a plug was Google Webmaster, which shows you both internal and external links.  The description on Google Webmaster’s home page is succinct enough to repeat here: “Welcome to your one-stop shop for comprehensive info about how Google crawls and indexes websites.”

The Sage Rock founder concluded his talk by looking to the future – the future of social media optimization (SMO) metrics.  While noting that this wasn’t invented for business (and so the available stats are rather poor), Lewis endorses the idea of aggregating SMO analytics tool to pull data.  Experience will show us, he noted, what is valuable to measure.

SEW Live – Measuring Social Media
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