I’ve worked in traditional media and social media.  The Radio Business and The Web Business.

One fallacy that continues to be spread is that in the web world you can measure the response with accuracy and the precision.

No, you can’t.

There are plenty of ways to measure things like, clicks and likes and fans and followers.

But what you cannot measure is the real impact that motivates people to action.

And we’re not really measuring action accurately either.

Time and time again I see businesses failing to connect the dots.  The waiter who has no idea what to do with a reward earned by a FourSquare checkin for example.

This is true with all forms of media and marketing, but some want to measure success with these false, incomplete numbers.

General Motors announced they were no longer going to use Facebook as an advertising medium because it wasn’t doing the job.

Let me tell you something.

The G.M. execs who pulled the plug are idiots.

Well payed idiots, but still they are measuring stuff that doesn’t matter.

We crave relationships, ones that make us feel good.  The heart of social media is based on building relationships.

I have learned that through conversations after the fact, that something I may have said, shared, or done had a tremendous impact on changing a persons life in little ways and sometimes major ways.

These are anecdotes.  You need to gather anecdotes to see the real impact of your social media, or any of your marketing for that matter.

Your comments and anecdotes are always welcome.

BTW:  Every once in awhile I screw up a word or grammar or something silly that spell check doesn’t catch.  Thanks to my friend Kit who pointed me in the right direction 11 hours after I posted this using the word Antidote instead of Anecdote.

My writing usually doesn’t need an antidote, just friends who catch my errors.