Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Social media: What's the ROI?

Summer travel is always a time for introspection and plans for the future. As part of that process, I have come upon an important analysis:

What's the value of social media?

As a former business owner and now advertising professor, I must explore the bottom line. How do we monetize social media? If not money, what's the alternative ROI? And if it's about opportunity cost - the value of the best alternative forgone - how else might we use the ever increasing time that is invested in being a social media participant?

Personal web sites and blogs produce content, that validates our brand, and we announce and build our posts and updates through Twitter, Google+, Facebook and LinkedIn. And if you're an Amazon publisher (I am) the ultimate rush is driving customers to our author page.

But here's one point to consider: If it's not about the outcome, it can be about staying relevant. Whatever our personal opinion, social media is a moving target that is of paramount importance to the students I serve. I must admit I'm rather uninformed regarding SnapChat, Instagram and Pinerest. And if you'd like to take a look into the future, check out Mark Cuban's new app, Cyber Dust.

I must learn, in order to teach. Just connected with an author who is making $40,000 a quarter selling "habit" books on Amazon. He agreed to Skype into one of my classes.

Let's keep the discussion alive and share the essence of "value."

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