As we gear up for the week ahead, we take a weekly look at what’s caught our eyes over the past seven days.
This week, we’re taking a look at analytics and measurement, and their importance in any brand’s marketing. Oh, and another Google tool gets put out to pasture – will free Docs be next?
The Death of a Beloved Tool
Perhaps the most buzzed about topic on the social channels this week was the death of Google Reader; although Reader hasn’t died yet, Google did announce its coming demise and RSS lovers everywhere were up in arms.
And, as bloggers are prone to not holding back, hundreds of posts went up with Google Reader as the subject.
My favorite assessment of the situation was Gini Dietrich’s post. Gini discusses Google’s employee incentive plan for Google+’s success, and views Reader as competition for G+.
I’m not an RSS fan; it’s just a place where blogs linger unread for me, replaced by Triberr as my curation tool.
But here’s what makes me go “h-m-m-m-m-mm:” I had all but abandoned Google+ months ago, but was pulled back in by Hangouts and Docs and Search. Every time I entered and that red square was there, I’d be tempted to check back in.
Now I find myself using it regularly. If Google+ is really a “layer,’ as Scott Monty likes to call it, then why remove one of the layers people passionately love?
The Darling of Social Media is Growing up
Pinterest, a darling of social networks for some time now, continues to grow in popularity. If your target audience is primarily women, you are probably already very active on the platform.
This week Pinterest announced that it would begin providing free analytics to marketers; Rebecca Steelman covers what types of analytics will be covered in her fabulous post on the subject.
What we’re thinking about at ArCompany is: will Pinterest’s attempt at becoming more useful and user friendly to businesses be an example of ‘how it’s done,’ versus the fumbling from Google+ and even Facebook when attempting the same thing?
There are brands, like Ikea for one, who understood early on that Pinterest was a ‘different’ sort of social network, and they figured out pretty quickly how to use it for their benefit without appearing like smarmy marketers. As Pinterest matures we’ll be watching to see if they can retain their grass roots loyal followers and become a business tool even more useful to marketers.
If that happens, the real trick will be for them to find a way to monetize the platform without alienating its core fan base.
Measuring Social Media: There IS Progress
The Barcelona Principles, created in 2010, were a push for better measurement of PR and led to the formation of the Coalition for PR Research Standards.
Of course, as marketers with a strong belief in the integrity of our work, we are paying close attention to this topic and watching its progress. In January Katie Delahaye Paine, Chairman, KDPaine & Partners, posted an update on the progress that the Coalition has achieved regarding setting standards.
Although dense, this post is full of terrific clarifications of what measurement terms mean. One example that warms my heart is the clear definition of Impressions as the:
Number of people who might have had the opportunity to be exposed to a story that has appeared in the media …
Impressions do not equal awareness. Awareness needs to be measured using other research tools. Impressions are indicative of the opportunity to see (OTS). Consider OTS as an alternative nomenclature to better clarify what impressions really means – [the] potential to see/read.
The need for these clarifications is evident to any of us who watch marketers not so dedicated to integrity throw a word like “Impressions” around as something more valuable than it actually is.
Business decision makers and marketers alike should also be paying close attention to standards of measurement in this regard; the stronger and more adapted these standards become, the better off our industry is.
That’s it for this week – see you in seven days!
VP of Content & Strategy at ArCompany. She has an extensive background in Sales, and focuses on generational marketing and content. With Hessie Jones she founded ArCompany’s Millnnnial, GenX and Boomer Think Tanks and writes and speaks on those topics from an insights/strategy perspective.