Social Media ROI

Olivier Blanchard

Published by

Pearson

ISBN

978-0-78-974741-9

RRP

£17.99

Reviewed by

Alan Bellinger

Score

9 out of 10

It’s tricky writing a review. You may think it’s obvious; you’re simply assessing the content for accuracy, readability and structure. And, indeed, those are the criteria against which I’ve given this mark. On the other hand, there is the question of how well it meets the expectations set up by its title; and if I gave a mark on that basis it would have been a two.

This book is an excellent primer for anyone looking for a blueprint on how to roll out a social media programme. It also goes into detail on analytics and metrics and then gets into a discussion on ROI. Blanchard rightly takes the position that you can’t measure the ROI on social media unless you have the basic programme right and have planned to collect the hard data on which to measure ROI.

The book is split into four sections - developing the programme, integrating it with existing communications, programme management and finally a whole section on measurement. But within that whole section there’s just part of one chapter on ROI. Perhaps now you understand my dilemma!

However, the fourth section on metrics is actually a really good primer for developing analytics for a social media programme (which, however you look at it, can be a daunting task). And those metrics will give you the basis of establishing the value-add that you can create through such a programme.

So if you’re just starting out in social media or even if you have a social media programme but feel it’s not meeting your expectations, this book is for you. In fact, it’s especially relevant to that second group! Many commentators have noted the condition of SO-ME-FA (social media fatigue); but that relates far more to the quality of the social media experience than to the quantity.

The first three sections of Blanchard’s book are targeted precisely at those poor quality interventions and provide the basis for assessing your current programme as well as pointing out the way forward to ensure that fatigue doesn’t apply to your community of practice.

The book closes with an ‘Afterword’ that contains so much practical commonsense you wonder why the author left such a nugget to the end. There are 10 bullet points here that provide the self-confidence to, as Blanchard says, ‘go build something great’. This book provides you with the information you need to do precisely that.

Further Information: Pearson

September 2011