My first post on New PR 2.0 Measurement was well received. Measurement is one of the hottest topics right now. I’m noticing that most of my professional associations and well known publications are having monthly seminars/webinars on this topic. There are so many tools and techniques that it can almost be overwhelming for the PR professional. How do you measure the conversations that take the form of tweets, comments and blog posts? What about negative comments in social networks? Are free measurement tools such as Google Analytics and TweetBeep enough?
So, here’s my take on approaching the complex yet critical function of measurement. The easiest way to provide you with info is to take an excerpt from Chapter 18: A New Guide to Metrics from mine and Brian Solis’ book, “Putting the Public Back in Public Relations” Hope this excerpt helps you to keep track of the conversations:
You can use these tools to automatically track conversations in addition to searching individual social networks:
Google Alerts-A free service that monitors Google, Google News, Google Blogsearch, and Google Images for your predefined keywords and sends an alert when they appear online.
Radian6-A commercial suite of Social Media tools to track, analyze, and engage in conversations, and to measure and report trends based on keywords and topics. Radian6 monitors all forms of Social Media, including blogs, top video-sharing and social-networking sites, forums, opinion and review sites, image-sharing sites, microblogging sites, and online mainstream media.
BuzzLogic-A commercial service that identifies influential online discussions on any topic, enabling marketers to better target their stories and insight to both opinion leaders and the engaged readers who follow them.
Nielsen BuzzMetrics-A commercial service that measures consumer-generated media (CGM, a.k.a. user-generated content or UGC) and online word-of-mouth to help companies understand and track conversations.
Social networks and microcommunities-Every social network includes a search box that enables you to search for conversations and activity related to keywords. For example, conversations taking place in Facebook, Plurk, MySpace, BackType, DIGG, YouTube, and public customer forums will most likely go unnoticed in any of these automated listening tools. It’s important that you search these services manually, especially if they’ve been identified as hotspots for discussions about your brand in the original listening audit. See the next chapter for a full list of services.
Blogpulse Conversation by Nielsen BuzzMetrics-A free tool for assembling, tracking, and messaging threaded conversations and memes. When a blogger publishes a post and other bloggers link to it, the original post (seed) creates a thread or meme, which extends with every new post that links back to the original.
Remember, because Social Media is rooted in conversations, participation, and engagement, measurement also includes the other areas I mentioned in the last post including:
- Leads or sales
- Calls to action
- Education and participation
- Registrations, membership, and community activity
How are you measuring these areas and what’s working for you?