We were recently meeting with a potential client who has a strong consumer base, a solid history and great products.  They approached us because we know how to guide corporate through the social media maze and we can help build community with their most valued present and future consumers.

They were excited to get going, they had already worked with an agency that said they could build up MySpace, Facebook and a blog but couldn’t and they seemed pretty savy about social media and their need to use these tools to help broaden their reach.

We got into the meeting, presented all that we could do and the value that social media brings to any company and suddenly and without warning the conversation turned to ROI.  Now I love ROI and believe in trying to track ROI and I appreciate the conversation.  We have amazing reports that we have built that can show the story of these online channels so the client can understand what is working and what isn’t.  Couple our reports with their website and sales stats and you have the whole picture. 

Somehow, the message was lost, though, and the fear set in that these efforts won’t help their bottom line numbers.  I hope and believe that despite their fears, they will take a chance and jump in (or fear more in the not so distant future that they will be left behind)! 

Social media is an amazing tool that every company can and should utilize.  Not every moment may be linked to a sale but the last phone call with your client where you asked them about their family may not be tracked either but it has great value! 

Mashable also talks about the ROI of social media for business here.