28% of Fortune 500 companies (139) have public-facing corporate blogs this year, according to data from the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, released in August. This represents a 5% point increase from 23% in 2011 and 2010, and is up 75% from 2008, when just 16% of the Fortune 500 had public-facing blogs. 2 of the top 5 corporations (Exxon and Wal-Mart) have public facing blogs, while the remaining 3 (Chevron, ConocoPhillips and Berkshire Hathaway) do not. Why are BLOG’s so important ? Because with a BLOG you’re going to reach more people and index higher in organic search.
A report from The Incyte Group on social media marketing that states “U.S. marketers spent $3.08 billion on Facebook brand pages and social media advertisements and the investment return has been dismal” . The fact is, despite their reach, open social networks have not proven to be the most effective customer-acquisition or revenue-generation channels, and most businesses are still seeking to quantify the business value of their investments.
Social media is taking up a bigger portion of marketing budgets, but few companies said they have been able to quantitatively measure its impact. Despite the increasing investment in social media, it’s still difficult for marketers to quantify their return on investment. Only 15% of marketers in the study said they can show the impact of social media on their businesses using quantitative approaches, while 40% of marketers can only demonstrate the impact qualitatively. Nearly half of marketers said they haven’t been able to demonstrate the impact of social media spending on their business at all.
It is abundantly clear that there is a massive “digital divide” between consumers engaging in real-time across channels, versus the digital marketing industry that is still largely siloed and not executing in real-time. It appears that this digital divide is due, in large part, to two key challenges observed in this research, namely: Overwhelming Complexity and Lack of Unified Measurement.