Only 17% Of Businesses Measure Social Media ROI; 12% Have A Realtime Analytics Solution

Two-thirds of business managers agree that it is “important” or “very important” for their business to “analyze and glean insight from large data sets from social interactions happening in real time.” But the majority (53%) say they don’t know when they will be investing in solutions that support big data analytics.

And, as we’ve seen too often before, only a small percentage (17%) currently measure social media ROI.

These findings are from a survey conducted jointly by Teradata Aster, Mzinga, and the Center for Complexity in Business (CCB) at the University of Maryland to provide insights into the adoption, use and current state of social business software and big data analytics in businesses. The survey was conducted online in the spring of 2012 and drew more than 500 participants from a wide variety of professional disciplines and industries, including media, financial services, consulting, marketing, human resources, engineering, and others.

The story that emerges is similar to that we’ve seen in other reports:  businesses are using social media, want to measure and analyze the results, but don’t have a clear definition for social media ROI , nor do they have a strategy for measuring it. What’s new is that most companies also don’t understand the concept of realtime analytics and have a strategy for investing in the tools to support it.

Social Media is Good!  … But We’re Not Doing It Right.

Eighty percent of survey respondents reported using social technologies in one or more areas of business, including marketing, employee collaboration, customer service and support and sales. But half (49%) state that they are not using social technologies to their full potential, and only 12% say  that social technologies have helped in their day-to-day roles and responsibilities

  • 36% say that social media is an integral component of their business, while 48% use it on a case-by-case basis
  • The top 3 users of social media are for marketing (64%); Customer experience, service or support (47%); Employee collaboration and/or knowledge sharing (39%) — all areas that impact trust and influence

Social Media ROI And Realtime Big Data Analytics

75% of respondents do not currently measure ROI for their social business programs. Of those who do not measure ROI, 31% don’t know if their vendor provides analytics. Many respondents create their own tools to provide analytics, while others utilize basic tools provided by social platforms, such as Facebook Insights and Google Analytics.

Even though 65% say that it’s important or very important to analyze and glean insight from large data sets from social interactions happening in real time, 42% of respondents are unfamiliar with big data technologies. Most are unable to indicate a time frame in which they will implement a big data analytics solution to help them do this. Only a small fraction (12%) already have a vendor that provides support for big data analytics; another 12% are planning on investing in big data analytics solutions in 2012.

The top metrics respondents want in a big data solution? Customer feedback and preferences (26%); user, behavioral and content trend analysis (22%); and ROI (19%).

To get more details, you can download the full report at: (registration required).  There is also a webcast scheduled for August 9, 2012.

What do you think?  Is big data just a buzz word — or will companies start to develop serious realtime analytics strategies in the coming months?