What if You Said Nothing?

by Roger Pynn

I usually hate long blog posts, but this one on the ROI of social media from Socialnomics is important on several fronts.

It establishes not only that social media should not be viewed as just another channel, but – with that pulsating music we’ve come to know them for – the latest video from Socialnomics demonstrates that the world is neither flat nor round but more akin to whatever shape water is.

As I typed the last paragraph, I took the time to teach Microsoft Word that Socialnomics is a word. I added Socialnomics to my dictionary because Erik Qualman and the gang get it. You have to wonder if one day you may just be able to get a degree in Socialnomics.

This post also reminded me of the debate that’s raged for years about quantifying the return on investment of public relations. People in our field have wrestled with the question of how to measure the impact of what we do. Far too many PR people have succumbed to the pressure and tried to apply advertising measurement tools, which left them totally focused on the publicity factor of our work … rather than the broad scope of communications necessary to manage reputation.

We’ve always chosen to say – as Qualman said in his post – that relating to those who have an interest in your organization is simply an extension of good management. In fact, I’ve stopped explaining the ROI of public relations and choose instead to ask “what do you think the cost would be if you failed to communicate with your stakeholders?

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