Archive for March, 2012

Social ROI – Google Analytics takes the first step

Social Marketing ROI Google Analytics Social media is struggling to develop a business model which provides business proof on the effectivess of this new form of marketing.  While Marketing Sherpa reports 20% of all companies do have social programs with bottom line ROI, most don’t.  Google Analytics – a software used by most companies to analyze website activities, has just announced the creation of new reports which take the first step towards reporting on the ROI of social marketing.

In their announcement, Group Manager Phil Mui said the following “Measuring the value of social media has been a challenge for marketers. And with good reason: it’s hard to understand exactly what is happening in an environment where activity occurs both on and off your website. Since social media is often an upper funnel player in a shopper’s journey, it’s not always easy to determine which social channels actually drive value for your business and which tactics are most effective.”

The Google Analytics reports are designed to take the first step in integrating social media with interactions on a company’s website.  While it is not a total answer and does require some integration, it is worth trying.  When you use this new capability, please provide some feedback on my blog.  I would like to hear from you what you like and dislike about the ROI feature.  It looks good and is a great first step towards Social ROI [my upcoming book will be another step].  Here are several blogs – the first from Google Analytics telling you more about their new feature.

Google Analytics Social ROI annoucement

Daniel Waisberg article in Marketing Land

Please let other markets know about this new capability on Google Analytics

Geocaching – New Marketing Opportunity???

geocaching  social marketingGeocaching – New Marketing Opportunity?

As a social marketing consultant, I am constantly on the lookout for new technologies and trends which might provide you with new tools to add to your social marketing arsenal.  Here is a hot, new game with the potential to become a part of your marketing program.  Check it out!

My college age daughter and her friends play it every week.  And so do over 5 million players at 1.67 million geocaching site.  Yet most marketers have never heard of it.  But you should.  It could be a new marketing hook to strengthen your relationships with current customers and attract new prospects to your site.  Geocaching is catching on throughout the world and is something with unique and interesting marketing opportunities.  If you are interested in making more money and increasing involvement with your customers, it is a new use of proven media and in a way that makes it fun to associate with your company.

The concept of Geocaching is simple.  Geocaching is an electronic treasure hunt.  One group of individuals takes some interesting trinkets or items, places them in a waterproof container and then hides it somewhere – in a field, on a sign, in a tree, buried in a yard.  They then use their cell phones to determine the geo location of the hidden item.  The individual then records a description of the “treasure'” on the geocaching website.  You can go to the site, enter your zipcode, and see the “treasures” around you.  Your mission – if you choose to accept it – is to get to the treasure before anyone else and get there undetected.  If you do, you retrieve the treasure and it is yours.

See for yourself – go to – and see what is around your home or office.  Then watch their videos.

What is the marketing potential of Geocaching? 

geocaching badge

As marketers, we must always look for ways to engage & involve our target markets.  Regardless of what we sell, people enjoy competition and the ability to do something fun – with others like them – and get some sort of reward at the end.

Geocaching is a way to accomplish this goal.  How can it be used for marketing?  Here are some ideas I came up with:

  • Combine Geocaching with a contest – Hide car keys, puzzle pieces, or medallions which teams can collect.  Whoever has more or the right one can get a prize.  You can do this locally, regionally, or nationally.
  • Geocaching at a convention – Hide items at a convention site and then have attendees search to find them.  They can be given prizes or rewards at your booth.  You might even have teams working to win a grand prize awarded at the end of the convention.
  • Combine geocaching with a scanvenger hunt – Start with a single geolocation that links to others.  Individuals must follow the clues to a final reward

Those are a few ideas I developed … but I am sure you can come up with better ones.  What are your ideas and thoughts about Geocaching and its potential marketing applications? 

Your thoughts?  And, if you like this blog, please re-tweet it to your colleagues


Randy Hlavac
Randy Hlavac is a marketing futurist who – since 1990 – has worked to integrate new technologies into the marketing strategies & tactics of B2B and B2C companies.

March 2012
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