Recently at a marketing event I had posed this question to Mahesh Murthy CEO of Pinstorm. I asked him whether the value of a click from Twitter is the same as the value of a click from SEM/Google Ads. His answer (much to my disappointment) was a YES. Later I tweeted the same question too and some of the replies I got was that ‘If you figure that out then you will be the first one?’
At the same time I had tweeted another question as well. It was “how many clicks = a conversation? or vice versa? How does one measure softer metrics like conversations, likes, retweets vs the CLICK?”
As we collectively dive into a world filled with Social media as IPL goes to youtube and My Name is Khan Premiere is Streamed in Facebook the question on the ROI of social media and the value of a click from social media vis a vis banner or SEM ads becomes more and more relevant.
Social media as you know is your social circle on the web. It more often than not has folks you like, know, trust, admire or adore. The latest launch by google buzz is also a move in that direction where in my friends and contacts on google can now share realtime updates and links with me.
Now question that arises is that I as a user who clicks on a link on say Google buzz am I more valuable to the website than lets say I the same user who clicks on a Google ad banner?
Well the answer may not be that simple but is one that needs some delving on. Some digital folks who read this may smirk and say ‘a click is a click is a click! I mean for god sake lets stop over analysing digital media!’
While I understand their frustration I believe we haven’t even started analysing digital media and what it offers in an intelligent manner. We folks like mathematicians have played with numbers and sold numbers. Because its very easy to sell numbers and right from the CFO to CMO in all companies understand numbers. But sometimes numbers are meaningless without any value attached to them.
We got 400 clicks vs We got 400 users on our site from 12 blogs and 8 tweets that recommended the customer experience at our online store. 19 of those users ended up shopping at our site, 200 registered and the rest bounced out.
While the above example over simplifies things you get what Im hinting at. I think its important that as an Industry we attempt at building more intelligence in the way we present ourselves. Digital shouldn’t be about clicks but it should be about ROI that is defined by intelligent analytics that drive value and not traffic only.