Some weekend thoughts about social media

Perhaps the opportunity to relax a little helps stimulate our minds, this weekend I’ve been preoccupied with a few thoughts on social media.

Most people understand that data is meaningless unless you have something to compare it to otherwise you have no context. If I told you in the year 2000 there were an estimated 420 million internet users you would be suitably impressed. When we give that number some context and something to measure it against it becomes even more impressive for example by 2009 that number had increased to 1.73 billion.

When measuring social media we compare the data we collect against our intended outcomes and also historic data to ensure we have enough context but what about comparing against our competitors? It’s possible that many people do analyse the metrics from their competitors to see how they compare on a like for like basis however we hardly ever hear about anyone doing it. Is it possible it is really common place but no one likes to shout about it because of the ethics involved? Should we be trying to make competitor analysis standard practice in our social media measurements?

The change of dashboard for the “Who’s Viewed My Profile” section of LinkedIn has also got me thinking. The changes themselves are cosmetic and they add nothing extra to the previous metrics and I believe LinkedIn are missing a trick to charge us more money. LinkedIn records how many times our account appears within search results but doesn’t tell us what keywords the person was using for their search. Surely that information would be of benefit to us so why don’t LinkedIn offer it, even in a paid for account?

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