For years now, advertisers have regarded online clicks, likes and buzz as the Holy Grail of marketing.
A March 18 presentation at the Advertising Research Foundation’s Re:think 2013 conference challenged that article of faith, reminding marketers that online buzz – an amalgam of Facebook, Twitter, blog and YouTube comments – is only a sales tool, and not a particularly effective one at that.
According to extensive and rigorous research, said Coca-Cola senior manager-marketing insights Eric Schmidt, “We didn’t see any statistically significant relationship between our buzz and our short-term sales.”
“When Coke put buzz sentiment data into the same analytical framework it uses to evaluate other digital media” at a 95 percent confidence level, Advertising Age reported, the numbers showed buzz affecting sales by only 0.01 percent. That’s one ten-thousandth of total sales.
This is not sour grapes, incidentally, because Coke has more Facebook fans – 61.5 million of them – than any other brand.
The most effective medium
Coke’s research also showed that the most effective medium for generating sales per impression was – are you ready for this? – print.
Television was slightly less effective than print. Read more →