The decision makers I often work with are skeptical of Web 2.0. They have at least a vague sense that it is a field of endeavor on which they need a substantial presence. However, they often are of a generation for whom social media is not broadly familiar or attractive. Additionally, they often work on initiatives or in organizations where caution is a desirable and appropriate thing.
Besides their social media skepticism, they share another trait. They’re almost universally driven as decision makers by cold, hard numbers – particularly if those numbers can be contextualized with how they represent progress towards organizational goals.
So measurement rationale, strategies and methodologies are always on my reading list – at least until a short upcoming combo business/pleasure trip to Berkeley brings fiction back into my life for five days.
And that’s why here are eight more social media metrics rather than a review of the newest Great American Novel:
- Unique visitors — human log-ons minus duplications indicates reach.
- Duration — length of stay demonstrates reach and intensity of engagement.
- Inbound links — a high “link to” count demonstrates credibility and influence.
- Downloads — video views, document downloads, etc. are measures of engagement.
- User ratings — user-generated rankings such as star ratings and favorites show credibility, influence, reach and engagement.
- Conversation — chat, comments and conversation indicate engagement and impact.
- Return visits — frequency of return visits displays credibility, influence and “stickiness.”
- Next clicks — where visitors go next can indicate credibility and satisfaction (satisfied – may go to unrelated topic site; dissastisfied – may go to related, perhaps oppositional, site).