Are brands getting it wrong when it comes to digital outreach? Technorati’s 2013 Digital Media report seems to indicate that brands are missing the target.
A key detail, apparently, is the fact that brands are using metrics from comScore and Neilsen to rate the bloggers they choose to work with, and most bloggers do not rank well with those tools.
Additionally, the report indicates that most influencers are publishing to blogs (and consumers trust blogs more than social networks), while marketers measure success by number of Facebook likes and Twitter followers (from page 4):
As an example, according to consumers, blogs are more influential in shaping opinion than Twitter, and when it comes to affecting purchase decisions, more important than Facebook.
Currently brands only allocate 10% of digital marketing budgets to social media spending, and 57% of that is spent on Facebook. YouTube and Twitter each get 13%, and only 6% is spent on online influencers and 5% on advertising on blogs.
One of the most interesting areas in the report is the discussion about the opportunities bloggers receive to work with brands and how often those pitches miss the mark (on page 33):
Influencers report that unsuccessful branding opportunities are most often caused by irrelevant pitches and expectations on their time. Influencers also report that those opportunities sometimes don’t represent a relevancy to their blog or audience.
But, as it usually happens with social media, it all comes down to metrics. The report concludes with this statement (page 34):
According to brand marketers, social spend in 2013 will increase substantially. Despite this increase, however, spending on social makes up only one-tenth of brands’ total digital budget. On the flip side, blogs still are one of the most influential mediums, ranking high with consumers for trust, popularity and influence. The disconnect between brand marketers and influencers is a result of a challenge they both face a lack of uniform metrics to effectively measure the success of influencer marketing campaigns.
You can download the entire report here. Definitely makes for some interesting reading.