This quarter’s State of the Net produced by Amas in association with the IIA covers changing media habits, digital advertising, the continuing rise of broadband, the Digital Economy in Europe, online shopping habits, social media and online reputations.
A guest post from IIA Social Media Working Group Member Eoin Kennedy of Slattery Communications. You can check out Eoin’s blog here. (I particularly like his most recent post at time of writing about the implications of using multiple usernames across social networks.)
IIA Member Company SimplyZesty recently ran another successful measurement camp. The session itself was attended by less than normal but ran to a familiar structure with two presenters followed by a group activity based on three case study scenarios.
Overall although online is much more measurable than traditional media the demands to quantify it financially have not been met to date. The first wave of measurement has been around physical numbers i.e. numbers of followers, number of posts. These give a topline indication of engagement but translating this into actual worth is tricky. How much is a follower/friend actually worth? Sure it’s great to get some “thumbs up” and “love” but what are these actual measures worth? For property owners such as bebo this poses real challenges. Engagement models are generally built around the pushing and advertising of the page profile but savvy brand holders want more. The burden of responsibility is getting pushed back to the property owners as marketers want more metrics to gauge success while platform owners need agreement on values attached to elements so that they can build charging models. Currently the CPM (cost per thousand impressions) advertising model is the main charging structure used. If the platform owner is charged with the financial delivery then they need to have full control over the creative, which again would pose problems.
Philip McCarthy now ex Bebo gave a good overview of some campaigns that they have run and admitted that measurement is still at an early stage. Bebo does engagement very well but an experience with Coca Cola Burn posed interesting questions about what he should have charged. Current values are around 3 euro cost per thousand which would indicate a value of €60k for the Coke campaign that achieved 20m impressions. The campaign achieved 17,000 visits to the site, 126 comments, 7 photos, 70 quizzes, 679 skins used.
Engagement is something that social media does really well and according to Philip there must be a value to it.
Philip debated using traditional rates that are charged for advertorials, something that is pretty much set and understood with traditional media. Basing digital charging models on established off line models has merit in that brand owners understand them but is probably not the best starting point.
The establishment of a base line measurement was discussed that could be used across other media but no one has yet taken this step to any great degree.
Where this gets particularly difficult is in getting values on things like thumbs up, love and other signs of engagement used on different social networks. It’s great to get them but what do they really mean and what value could be put on them?
One of the areas discussed that could help on measurement in the real world was the use of redeemable bar codes. The idea being that rather than a virtual present that people could send a ‘printable’ bar code or even one that could be displayed on a phone. This could be taken to an outlet and redeemed. This could help track social media activity to actual sales. For example a coffee shop could build an app that allows users to send a coffee to friends. The friend could print out or show the barcode that would be scanned through at an actual coffee shop. By doing this the coffee shop could measure the actual sales generated by the voucher and social media activity. Some good work in being done in this area by IIA Member Company Zappa but problems still exist for terminals to read bar codes on screen.
The overall feeling from the event was that some leadership needs to be established in measuring the value of online campaigns and that the current metrics, while good, are not financially based enough for brand owners. The UK Measurement Camp has also suffered from similar problems.
My own observation is that once criteria that are reasonably sound are established Klout, TweetLevel for Twitter, or Technorati for blogs could start to become industry standards. At some point someone needs to take a brave step. The online community will undoubtable respond and some progress could be made.
State of the Net Issue 15 is now available to download from the Resources Section of IIA.ie. This publication, produced in association with IIA Member Company Amas, and indeed all those from 2009 provide invaluable business intelligence for decision makers in Irish business today. The Winter 2009 issue covers:
- An overview of the results of the Amas/ Marketing Institute of Ireland 2009 Irish Online Marketing Sentiment Survey,
- Top 10 iPhone Apps for Ireland (I have 2 of them and I’m embarrassed to admit that one of them is Sonic the Hedgehog!)
- Broadband growth figures for all platforms and mobile specifically from ComReg
- An overview of research from the EU commission on cross border product abvailability
- Year end details on top news searches from Google
- Usage of price comparison sites by product/ service from Amárach Research for the National Consumer Agency
- A cost/ benefit analysis of Social Media usage by Irish SMEs.
If your company has produced research that you feel might be suitable for publication in the next or other upcoming issues of State of the Net, please feel free to get in touch with me, Roseanne, to discuss.
The latest edition of the ever popular State of the Net is available in the Resources section of the IIA Website. Those of you attending Bizcamp tomorrow – I will have some with me if you would like to peruse a hard copy.
This month’s edition includes information and statistics about:
- Mobile Internet,
- Broadband uptake,
- Ireland’s Personas,
- Internet Use by age,
- Trust Online in Internet Transactions,
- and IIA Member Stats.
If you would like to download any of the graphs for reuse please visit the AMAS blog where they are available for download.
- ideas to leverage the power of the internet to combat the downturn
- stats about Internet use, mobile internet, online shopping, online banking, digital advertising & broadband penetration
This quarter’s State of the Net (PDF, 805K, opens in a new window) includes information about:
- the launch of The Ideas Campaign;
- the uptake of Broadband in Ireland compared to our EU neighbours;
- the number of Irish tweeters on Twitter.com;
- statistics about Internet use in Ireland;
- business use of the internet and eBusiness application;
- information from the Data Protection Commissioner about spam in Ireland;
- and child safety online
State of the Net is a quarterly publication produced by Amas for IIA Members and Irish businesses to help them keep abreast of key Internet trends and statistics. You can access all previous editions here.
The end of 2008 is looming and we are doing a bit of navel gazing here in IIA HQ. Navels are all very well for gazing at but they’re a bit low on useful information. All of you however have lots of information about our events in your pretty little noggins and we want it!
We’ve prepared a survey about our events where we ask you about what you liked about last year’s events, what you didn’t like, what kind of events you would like to see next year and we also ask your opinion on some specific aspects of our programme. So fill out the survey please – it’ll only take five minutes!
The IIA would like to welcome SiteImprove as one of our newest members. As the name suggests their focus is on improving websites and they do just that for 43 irish customers as well as benefiting numerous customers in the UK, USA and Denmark. If you want to keep on top of broken links, spelling mistakes and accessibility issues then you now have the chance with a free trial of SiteCheck and 10% discount for IIA members. The same offer applies to SiteImprove’s website analytics service, SiteAnalyze and their enterprise search solution, SearchImprove. To take advantage of this offer or find out more contact Seán on 01 817 1888 or email sne [@] siteimprove.ie mentioning the IIA in your correspondence of course. A veritable gift to anyone charged with managing a complex site like… well me actually!
Net Behaviour were on their best behaviour last week when they joined the IIA. They attended the recent IIA Congress and I subsequently made contact with them as I did with many of the non-member delegates. To quote their own website:
Net Behaviour are online experts fusing established planning methods, bespoke research and extensive experience to create key insights into the digital consumer which enables us to provide clients with great digital marketing campaigns.
When I read this I immediately thought of all our members who contact me looking for facts and figures about the nebulous net and who attend our events aimed at increasing sector skills in the area of developing, managing, and measuring online campaigns and I knew Net Behaviour would be a good fit.
Normally I include a new member company’s logo but I hope you will forgive me for using a different element of their site which caught my magpie eye. Instead of profile pictures they each have a personalised robot image. The image above is Managing Director Justin Cullen’s profile image. We will all be assimilated
As the Irish internet tipping point of one million Irish broadband users hoves into sight, Amas in conjunction with us here in the IIA, release State of the Net Issue 9. This is available to all via our Resources section of the IIA site. We will also be distributing print editions to delegates at Congress 2008.
This quarter’s edition of State of the Net covers:
- Key statistics from the first Joint National Internet Research presented by Tim Griffiths, JNIR Chair
- A distillation of the latest key figures from the CSO in relation to internet use, examining usage by age and region in particular
- A review of Comreg’s latest business information and communications technology survey results
- Figures about broadband uptake and coverage
- Business use of eGovernment for full electronic case handling
- The rise and rise of mobile
- What are Irish internet users searching for?
- The majority of online shoppers have no complaints
AMAS, who are members of the IIA, are a consultancy specialising in online channels and they help businesses and government bodies to plan, manage, evaluate and market their online channels.