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Stop picking on the new kid

11 Jul

Reproduced from Aditya’s blog

I hate it wen people ask me for ROI on social media. I always ask them this, “If I put up a 25 fuckin’ feet banner with strobing lights and loud music coming out of it on Marine Drive for one month, can you tell me the EXACT ROI it gives me?”

That usually does the trick to shut most of them up. Some of them go ahead to explain things like X no. of views and footfalls. And that X is an elusive number you know. No one knows for sure what it is. They just know it’s a lot and it’s more than the no. X from a banner in the middle of the sea! Even this definition is wrong, if you go by the book. ROI is defined as Y amount of money you get back after investing X amount. Not footfalls. Not hits. Not conversations. Hard cash…

Brand managers usually calculate (if some MBA honcho is reading this, please correct me if I am wrong) ROI from different mediums using the no. of users reached. And there in lies the problem. If I reach X no. of users via TV and same X no. of users via Radio, which one  is more influential and will give me more ROI? No one fucking knows. Sure, you can make up some metrics by giving weighted values to each medium i.e. TV carries 2x times more influencing power than Radio and hence will give more ROI (this magic no. 2x either is made out of thin air or via some kinda market research). But lemme make one thing very clear. This is all qualitative.

You need more proof? Take TV for example. TRP’s are calculated by INTAM (Indian Television Audience Measurement), which is the only electronic rating agency functioning in India. And they install something called People Meters in sample TV homes to measure their viewing habits and then extrapolate it to the whole of India. Someone once told me that they install around 5,000 Meters i.e. 5,000 for a total of 63,000,000 total sets in India! Source

Also, check out this article from Amber Naslund which brings up this interesting research:

Number of web pages Google finds for the following phrases:

“direct mail ROI” – 131,000
“email ROI” 55,900
“radio ROI” – 33,200
“TV ROI” – 12,600 (television roi is just 291)
“magazine ROI” – 3,150
“newspaper ROI” – 210
“billboard ROI” – 85

“social media ROI” – 796,000

We suddenly care an awful lot about measuring this new stuff when we haven’t demonstrated nearly the same urgency around measuring the rest of our work (or at least we haven’t been nearly as vocal about it).

Peace out. I rest my case.


Dr. Social Media Marketing Douchebag or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Internet

30 Apr

Ok. So there I was. Proud entrepreneur dude. Just returned home. The dude who owns his own internet company. The most eligible bachelor in the small town of Rewari … I was home to bask in all my glory!

Ladies of Rewari .. one at a time please!

But then the inevitable happened. My dad told me this:

I know a guy .. who knows another guy .. who knows this guy .. You should meet this guy. He is a social media guru.

WTF. And my pride came crashing at my proud puffy-with-pride feet. I know my dad was asking me – “Son, are you a guru yet or not?”

No really. A guru! But it got me thinking! Haven’t I heard this one before? Haven’t we all heard this before? But over the months we have learned to recognise the gurus from the true thought leaders. The douchebags from the enthusiasts. Before we go ahead, it’s time you look at this video:

And now here’s a quick tutorial me and Manasi made on how to recognise your classic example of a Social Media Douchebag:

  • He proclaims his douchebaggery by using words like Social Media Expert, Social Media Guru, Social Media Rockstar, Social Media Maven and Social Media Evangelist. Trust us, if you see these phrases .. run. Run faster than Lola Ever Ran!
  • He actually behaves like a celebrity. Expecting to be invited to every event and every tweetup. Wake up dude! On the internet, this monkey sniffing his own butt is a bigger celebrity than you.
  • He has no idea what he / she is selling and will layer it with words like ‘social currency’ ‘engagement economy‘ and ‘conversation strategy’
  • If you ask him what ROI on Social Media is; the reply is  ‘Return On Influence’ and ‘Return on Engagement’
  • If you ask him her what’s wrong with your brand he will tell you that you need to ‘evangelise your evangelists’ and ‘monetise your Facebook page’
  • He will promise to get you 50,000 fans and 10,000 followers per month (this one’s a side-effect of the epidemic called Social Media Marketing which is running rampant right now)

And hi, if you are reading this and you satisfy more than one of the above conditions, then:

And if you are still in doubt, then read this website like you would have read your Playboy magazine.

Amen to the internet fairy.