PRSA’s chair weighs in on ‘PR’s next great challenge’: Measuring social media

Rosanna M. Fiske, chair and CEO of the Public Relations Society of America, says the industry can’t afford to spend years arguing over the most effective social media metrics.

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Not exactly.

One problem has been crossed off the list: developing global measurement standards. The Barcelona Principles achieved this, with further codification at July’s European Summit on Measurement. But other issues remain.

Chief among them is PR’s next challenge: measuring social media.

KMart CMO Mark Snyder put this into perspective recently when he told a marketing panel in New York that the biggest challenge facing marketing executives is to find a way to connect social media’s value to sales.

Unfortunately, that fails to take into account an important aspect of this conversation. While social media may be a marketing communications tool, it doesn’t yet receive resounding plaudits as a long-term sales tool.

I understand what Snyder meant. There’s a need to measure communications campaigns in a way that is less esoteric and hyperbolic but demonstrates real business results.

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