Here’s interesting fodder for marketing pros. The Kelton Research August Global Marketing Report takes a worldwide snapshot of marketing and advertising trends to watch. Having never heard of this company before today, I also checked out their website and highly recommend a visit as it blends great flash graphics with readable copy and an honest tone.

The report chronicles a dozen or so marketing and advertising efforts across a range of mostly consumer industries. The item that caught my eye was about Proctor & Gamble using digital media in, among a variety of venues, the social media space of YouTube.

Kelton states that P&G is launching a new 12-episode web series called, “A Parent is Born,” using digital media to chronicle the “birth of parents” as they go through pregancy, childbirth, and early months with their children. The initiative is part of Procter & Gamble’s goal to connect with millennial moms while moving ad dollars from TV to online media. I checked out the first “Webisode” on Pampers.com, finding it engaging even to me, who is past the baby parenting stage (barring BIG surprises from my wife!). No doubt, the YouTube connection points to the company leveraging social media as well and though Kelton didn’t mention this, the Pampersvillage Twitter site can be expected to point regularly to these videos.

This leads to that truism of on-line marketing – whether “social media,” “search engine optimization” or plain old web site building: “Content is King.” These days, the content can be useful articles, enlightening graphics, or, now, reality TV or music video-style webisodes. This content requires the teamwork of the marketing team, especially research, and subject matter experts in the company who should provide the depth of understanding that informs the information being presented. Simple blog posts are cheap enough to host, but the real investment is time. Webisodes such as P&G’s bring the cost to a hard-dollar level. Either way, an investment is required and smart marketers will measure results to cost-justify the use of dollars.

Measurement of Social Media
Here’s a resource-filled and insightful blog post of suggested ways to measure ROI on social media. Evaluting the ROI of Your Online Friends. Clearly, there are many ways to measure, some requiring more analysis than others. Particularly in the “active” evaluation processes – whew! But clearly, finding influencers amid your “fans” or “followers” or blog readers adds valuable weight to the evaluation of the social media efforts.

Dos and don’ts: Measuring social media, by Nathan Golia appeared in DM News in April and suggests measuring tangible things like click-throughs and product sales, as well as more social-specific measures. “As it relates to social media success, the entire ecosystem of publishers, developers, advertisers and agencies need to get past [click throughs] and onto more relevant metrics, such as time spent, usage and even utility and virality. Social media marketing isn’t about just another online campaign, it is about engaging end users in relevant, integrated fashions that provide utility and/or community features.”

My next goal is to track down more actionable information on measuring social media tracking. If you have heard of a great tool, please let me know.

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