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November 18, 2010


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Katie--I love the comparison between using cheap accounting software and cheap social media monitoring software. Part of the challenge with tracking the social media landscape is the amount of noise surrounding the important conversations. Additionally much of the social media information gathered occurs too early in the purchase process to be tracked to a sale or is a cost avoidance as is the case wiht customer service. Happy marketing, Heidi Cohen


These aren't measurement companies, they're nerds playing the VC lottery.

With all the free API's, and Google, Facebook & Twitter encouraging everyone to bet often, should we be surprised?

Scott Lake

Hmmmm, I don't know why SWIX always gets lumped in with social media listening, content analysis and reputation management apps. We don't do any of that stuff.

In fact, SWIX is not even a PR measurement app, its social marketing app that does two simple but important things.

1) SWIX tracks SM audience metrics across 20 different SM apps and show those metrics in one unified dashboard. Simple quantitative data that most companies need.

2) SWIX tracks clicks, conversions and sales data of social media marketing campaigns and groups that data by the different social apps that were used to promote the campaign. Again quantitative data that most companies need.

Ironically enough, the whole goal of SWIX is to provide social marketers and agencies with solid quantitative data that they can use to base their own analysis on, and ideally make it easier for them to sell more of their services to their clients.

I suppose our one downfall is that we do have nice graphs.

Scott Lake


Good comments, Scott. I think Swix gets lumped in to the general category of Social Media Measurement tools because it says on its website:

"You can’t manage what you can’t measure.

Whatever your social media goals; growing your community, building brand awareness, actively promoting and just spreading the word, SWIX products help you figure out what’s working and what’s not."

I heard about Swix from one of my fellow measurement gurus who questioned the price point relative to what you were promising. So my rant wasn't just about monitoring tools, but about the notion that true measurement can be done for little money and no effort. I think your product has alot of potential, but I'm very concerned about the proliferation of data that may or may not be accurate or meaningful relative to the goals that organizations set forth.

Mark Weiner

Thanks Katie...I read your newsletter regularly and I appreciate the opportunity to comment on "measurement menace" this month. I couldn't agree more that many of the "low cost" providers turn out to be low-quality, inflexible, and time-consuming resource-hogs...as such, their total cost can be significantly more than advertised.

I might be splitting hairs because I know your good intentions, but let me offer two semantic distinctions:

The first distinction is between "measurement" and "evaluation," "research" and "analysis:" "Measurement" can be nothing more than "counting" and it can be done inexpensively and with high quality...it just won't reveal much. Expertise, experience and judgment are requirements for evaluation, research and analysis to provide insight, context and understanding and, most important of all, to aid in decision-making.

The second distinction is between "cheap" and "inexpensive." There are often inexpensive solutions which do not compromise integrity...if one knows what one wants and can make intelligent compromise, one can hire very cost-efficient, return-generating solutions.

Given what good research and evaluation can reveal about PR's extraordinary ability to drive positive business results, scrimping on research (and thereby limiting your ability to optimize the organization's ability to generate quantifiable ROI)may be penny-wise and pound-foolish.

So while "inexpensive" does not necessarily equate with "bad" or "menace," one must be careful in choosing a partner, whether it's for measurement, research, evaluation or analysis to insure that one's investment is made wisely.

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