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Marketers Struggle with Social ROI

A new survey into Irish marketing professional’s behaviours and attitudes towards social media shows that 91% believe that it was important to their business but 55% said that they hadn’t set Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) while 51% admitted that they were unable to measure the return on investment in social.

The survey, #SocialOutlook15, was carried out by Edelman Digital with the Marketing Institute.

Looking at the individual social platforms Twitter was seen as being the most effective (67%) and the platform most used (87%), however perhaps due to the scale of the potential audience Facebook is seen as the most important social platform (36%). The vast majority of respondents (82%) have integrated social into traditional marketing activities with increased awareness, increased traffic and developing loyal fans highlighted as the main objectives of their social strategies.

Facebook also appears to be leading the way in terms of paid support with 70% of respondents investing in Facebook Advertising versus 40% in Twitter and 30% in LinkedIn. Overall, 75% of respondents agreed that they plan to increase the percentage of their marketing budget given to social media with Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube destined to see the biggest increases in activity levels followed by blogging, Facebook and webinars.

Commenting on the release of the survey, Darragh Rea, Head of Digital in Edelman said: “The survey supports a lot of what we’ve seen in Ireland and in other markets across the globe and highlights that whilst marketing teams are enthusiastic in their approach towards social all too often they fail to embed the necessary structures to adequately measure success. From our work managing online communities with hundreds of thousands of fans we know that social can be an incredibly effective tool but much like other marketing channels it must be measured against core business objectives with KPI’s set in advance. The demise of organic reach on Facebook last year saw a greater appreciation for the need for paid support across platforms and the evolution of the advertising solutions on social means we can expect to see huge growth in this area in 2015. This year we also expect to see better integration of social into core marketing activities with a greater emphasis on interactivity and responsiveness rather than content publishing.”

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