Things I’ve Learned from Lately #6

“Things I’ve Learned from Lately” is a regular compilation of articles that have made me a smarter social media marketer. Hopefully, they’ll help you, too.

Engagement as a Metric – John Koetsier writes in VentureBeat that there’s one metric that takes all social KPIs (fan growth, fan interactions, etc.) into account—engagement. Engagement allows you to see that your post or tweet did something in terms of changing behavior by taking an action.

Key Takeaway: Engagement is one interpretation of social KPIs. The issue is that engagement differs across platforms, and some platforms deliver better “engagement” than others that are better equipped to deliver other measures of success. There isn’t ‘one metric to rule them all.’ Metrics should be tied to business objectives, so I take issue with the article in that respect. Although, it brings up some excellent points worth considering as a business evaluates its objectives.

Using YouTube to Deliver Value – Andy Sernovitz of SmartBlog uses NVIDIA as an example of a brand using YouTube to effectively launch new products by making content easy to share, keeping it simple and preparing/planning early on.

Key Takeaway: Video content can be challenging for marketers, but if you keep your audience in mind, you can deliver the right video in a way that matters to them. A video doesn’t have to be viral to be successful. If it delivers information that’s both useful and relevant to the audience, it will do its job.

One of my favorite examples of this is Lowes. As a new homeowner, I’m constantly turning to their YouTube channel for tutorials on how to get a job done. They didn’t set out to create viral videos. They set out to deliver value to their audience by being a trusted resource for home improvement.

Experience Trumps All – Geoff Livingston cuts through the clutter and buzzwords that often fill our work every day to make the point that no matter what you do or what you communicate, the experience with the product will make or break your other efforts.

Key Takeaway: A brand isn’t shaped by what it says it is. It’s shaped by a combination of how it communicates, how customers discuss them and the brand’s actions. Start with getting what you’re selling right. Then decide how you’re going to sell it.

Social Network Users Aren’t Satisfied – CNET discusses about a new report from ForeSee evaluating user satisfaction of top social media platforms, including Google+, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn and others. Google+ users are most satisfied overall, while Facebook users are least satisfied. But one of the shocking revelations is that social media companies are consistently among the lowest-rated companies beating only airlines, television services and newspapers.

Key Takeaway: Facebook users are fed up and not happy with what they’re getting. Everything from privacy concerns to ads are making users question what they get from Facebook. Still, it’s the network you love to hate… or hate to love. People keep on coming back. They’ve invested a lot of time and capital into developing their networks. Only time will tell if that investment is worth it, and platforms like Google+ are hoping they decide it isn’t.

Worthless Facebook Fans – Kelly Rynard discusses a statement made at the AllFacebook Conference that suggested brands asking their fans to unlike their Pages. Some brands have grown fan bases only there for the prize or the giveaway, not people truly interested in the brand. Sometimes it’s good to ‘cut the fat.’

Key Takeway:. Have you been going after the number or the people? The number might look good, but if it doesn’t represent the right people, it’s worthless.