Social Network: ROE vs. ROI: Part I
As a social media strategist at Access Networks, I have found that one of the most important tools for effective online communication is truly knowing our company from the inside out. This means not only understanding our brand, our overall marketing strategy, our clientele and our solution, but also knowing what we do in the field and how our solution complements, impacts and enriches others in the industry. What this means for me is a continuing education about all things Access Networks, including project walks, product demos, attending industry events and a commitment to discuss, shift and adjust our strategy as the industry evolves.
Remember that the person in charge of your social media strategy has direct, communication with the outside world and will help to shape the public image of your brand. The more knowledge you entrust to that person, the more successful your campaign will be.
Like your sales staff, social media marketers publicly represent your brand, which means they must always respond to questions quickly and accurately, and be able to engage with industry peers and followers on an authentic and personal level. When you provide your social media strategist with this high level of education and understanding, your business will shift from merely having a social media presence to becoming a social force in the industry.
ROE then ROI
One popular argument against social media is that there exists no concrete way to determine its direct return on investment (ROI). While ROI is absolutely the driving force of any business’ marketing activities, I would argue that social networking efforts should focus on gaining ROI by strengthening return on engagement (ROE). The beauty of social media is that it gives users a place to listen and be heard, to converse and to share ideas. A digital town hall, if you will. It also uniquely presents a marketing landscape where positive ROE often leads to ROI, but rarely the other way around.