MPI 2011: The Year that Social Media ROI Finally Arrives

On my way to the Hilton Penn Station for the February MPI-NJ Chapter Event, I reflected on the movie I just saw, The Social Network, the story about Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook and I was curious about the personality of our speaker from Silicon Valley. Eric Ly, Co-Founder of LinkedIn and now CEO of Presdo Inc. was going to speak on the topic 2011: The Year Social Media ROI Finally Arrives.

Eric Ly stepped up to the podium and he was a calm, humble man with a soft spoken voice. Eric must have known that most of the crowd had seen The Social Network and how many people must have viewed the characters played in the movie. He took no time at all to crack a joke and say, “when the movie about LinkedIn comes out, I bet the well known actor on LOST, Daniel Dae Kim, will most-likely be cast as me!” That little ice breaker cracked the tension in the room as he started on a presentation that truly inspired a different way of thinking.

Eric explained that many businesses, approximately 80%, have a Facebook and a Twitter account. Many, he mentioned, do not know how to measure its success in terms of concrete numbers. Although the subject of how to measure ROI on social media is very new and has so many variables based on strategy and goals, Eric did present three case studies of successful social media campaigns. ACC.2010 – their social media campaign increased attendee to attendee interaction, NASN – their social media campaign increased engagement by 69% and the NAB show had the highest performing campaign ever to drive attendance to their event. He also gave an example of how companies are begining to fade the lines of formal company-to-customer interaction and how Twitter is a valid and meaningful tool for companies to respond to clients publicly. Check out this Comcast example: Twitter
As he concluded the case studies, he presented some interesting ways that event companies could begin to produce similar results with their own social media platforms. Determine your goals, social media tools, set your baseline and use metrics such as brand, retention, community, feedback and revenue and you’re on your way to measure your social media strategy. Eric ended his presentation with these words of advice, “utilize all the tools you have available to you, provide reliable and credible content to your users, start modest and work your way up and lastly, keep at it!”.

Eric Ly is the co-founder of LinkedIn, the social website that connects business professionals with each other. Currently he is the president and creator of Presdo, a web application that aids in event networking. To learn more about Eric Ly or Presdo, please visit: Presdo