A few days ago, analytics company MarketShare announced a partnership with Word of Mouth (WoM) measurement experts; Keller Fay. This partnership will see the global analytics giant offering some new insights into techniques used to measure the return on investment (ROI) impact of WoM campaigns.
Using Keller Fay’s TalkTrack data, MarketShare has measured the impact of WoM across a plethora of categories including automotive, financial services and technology industries and found a clear and quantifiable correlation between WoM and sales.
“We have made great strides in cracking the code on social media ROI. As earned media becomes even more integral to marketers of all types, we continue to incorporate new streams of data and enhance our cross-media analytics to provide a 360 degree view of all business drivers,” said Ivan Markman, chief operating officer, MarketShare. “We are pleased to work with Keller Fay, the industry standard for offline word of mouth measurement. TalkTrack integration will add an important dimension to our solutions.”
This is good news for both clients and WoM agencies alike. We all know WoM works (it is the oldest form of marketing after-all), we just need to integrate it as an official ‘channel’ so it can be measured alongside other more traditional elements of the marketing mix.
This official integration is very exciting because it means two things:
1) Clients are starting to recognize the importance of WoM as a channel and are happy to invest in formal measurement techniques
2) Before long, WoM results will be comparable against traditional channels such as TV and Press
Brad Fay, chief operating officer, Keller Fay also added: “Offline WOM still represents approximately 90 percent of total conversations about brands, and one in four of these conversations can be linked back to paid-advertising.”
Before you fall off your chair at the prospect of only 10% of ‘conversations’ being digital (mobile, sms, email, social media etc), please note that this statement doesn’t account for things like social media ‘sharing interactions’ or readership of CGC, such as posts about brands, that provide huge advocacy benefits. Ed Kellar, CEO of Kellar Fay also added:
“At Keller Fay we are measuring word of mouth conversation, not readership of consumer generate content. Lots of people might read information on social networking sites, but contribute infrequently. Especially when it comes to brands”
That said though Keller Fay have estimated that there are a massive 3 billion word of mouth conversations that take place every day in America. According to Fay, only 1.3% of these conversations are accounted by social media. It might not sound like a lot – but this is still 43million daily conversations in the social space daily.
However you ‘carve up the conversations’ its clear that the sheer opportunity that WoM presents as a channel in it’s own right is hard to ignore!