If you've read many of my previous posts you'll know of my views about the role and value of social media - its effectiveness as an exercise in relationship building and therefore its value as a one-to-one relationship marketing tool (which you'll find emphasised in my book The 10 Principles of Open Business).
Its job is to create advocates. But what does advocacy mean on the spreadsheet?
- A clear and measurable definition of advocacy
- A behaviour change which can reasonably be defined as identifying a shift from standard customer to advocate.
- A cash value which can be reasonably attributed to that behaviour change
- A robust 'number of friends' each of us could influence.
- A mathematically robust formulation of transmission of positive influence in networks.
Pass on to friends (F) = Y * .34 * X
Pass on to friends of friends (FF) = Y * .1 * X
Pass on to friends of friends of friends (FFF) = Y * .06 * X
On average they spend £300 with us. But we take a subset of these, group B, and provide them with exceptional customer service.
Pass on to friends (F) = (6) * .34 * £100 = 204
Pass on to friends of friends (FF) = (6*6) * .1 * £100 = 360
Pass on to friends of friends of friends (FFF) = (6*6*6) * .06 * £100 = £1296
I'd be interested in your views on the methodology I've used.
I believe I have erred on the side of conservative assumptions. But they seem reasonable. If I rave to six of my friends about a great customer experience I had with X, the assumption is that the next time (at any time in the next five years) these guys have an option on which brand to choose a third will recall my positivity about X and give it a try... and so on to 2nd and 3rd generation ties.
This is less that perfect I'll grant, but for every challenge that can lower the output (will a third of your peers buy or just think nice thoughts?), there's another to consider to raise it (is six really a big enough number of friends to consider at each iteration?, what about all the advocacy that happens face to face but not online).
My response is this is the best I've got to so far, it ploughs a reasonable and conservative middle course, and it is based on the summation of much of the best of thinking, theory and testing in network science.
Using it allows me to set realistic and accountable KPIs and steer social media and social content strategy in the right direction.