Proving Social Media Works

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The only way to get Marketers to really embrace and engage with Social Media is to prove to them that it works.

About a year ago, famed Marketing professor, Ken Wong, spoke at a private dinner event. During his talk, he pushed for Marketers to really take a serious look at the many Digital Marketing opportunities, but then cautioned the Digital Marketers in the audience that there won’t ever be any kind of true groundswell unless we provide the masses with real business case studies with defined metrics that truly demonstrate success. Essentially, most businesses will not be cutting edge or bleeding edge, and they probably won’t even be fast-followers. More than likely, they’re looking for those who have walked down the path before them and would like to read and better understand the process, the challenges and the final metrics.

It sounds like a tall order… until now.

Tod Maffin is widely respected entrepreneur, radio guy (and Podcaster) who is always highly engaged in the Digital Marketing spheres (he’s also an author and speaker). He just launched his latest project, Case Studies Online – Proven Social Media Tactics For Assured ROI, and it’s pretty amazing. The database currently stores almost 300 Social Media – Digital Marketing case studies that can be searched and viewed by demographics, specific industries, types of organizations, regions and even specific tactics. So, you can look for Social Media case studies that involved moms for the automotive industry using a Facebook Fan Page, and voila! Pushing it further, you can even refine that search criteria more.

Keep in mind, this is just getting started.

Case Studies Online may not have everything you’re looking for, but it’s a new venture and there are probably many more case studies that need to entered into the database. The opportunity here is to play with it as it is, and to also help Tod add more and more content. So, if you’ve come across a case study that is not a part of this database, please let Tod know. Or, if you have ever been involved with a published case study, also make sure to let Tod know.

Imagine the opportunities in Digital Marketing if each and every one of us ensures that Case Studies Online gets constantly updated and stays up-to-date?


  1. This is a great idea for a start-up and will be extremely useful in providing prospective clients with evidence of successful marketing campaigns using social media. A minor problem that might arise could be small social media agencies using the site as a means of advertising their success stories. This has the potential to dilute the valuable material available on the site as of now.

  2. “Imagine the opportunities in Digital Marketing if each and every one of us ensures that Case Studies Online gets constantly updated and stays up-to-date?”
    Indeed! Thank you for highlighting such an incredible resource. I will certainly promote and support what Tod is doing here.

  3. This should be a great resource for not only web marketing people but also companies of all sizes who are looking for ideas on how to implement social media effectively.
    I look forward to watching it grow, hopefully with case studies from around the world and perhaps contributing one or two of my own.

  4. Mitch, thanks for passing the case study link. However, is ROI really just increasing the # of fans and followers? Quick look at the site and the Iowa State Lottery case ( seems to point only to an increase in followers rather than an actual return.
    This seems to be a recurring theme I’m seeing lately in the advertising/marketing world. We seem to readily pat ourselves on the back when we run a campaign that increases followers but I rarely see that translated to an actual “return”, i.e. revenue.

  5. Thanks for this! I’m always looking for case studies to share with my students. A great resource that I’ll encourage others to add to. (Great presentation tonight, by the way. Thanks!)

  6. Great Idea, indeed. So. How do we do? Open an account on Slideshare and share it all? A Posterous? Who’s gonna really make something? Are there already business plans for this type of great initiative? I would be glad to participate.
    By the way, I really appreciate your work!

  7. Chicken or egg? The one case study I read there says that the facebook fans spent more money, more often and referred the place more to friends. 5% of the customers had joined the facebook site.
    Their conclusion is being a facebook fan encourages one to spend more. I say the info they have does not support that conclusion. Could be those customers that love the place spend more anyway, refer it more often anyway – and are just such big fans they also ‘fan”d the business on facebook.
    I’ve yet to see concrete evidence facebook does anything for a ‘real’ business – swarming taco trucks in LA doesn’t count IMO. Perhaps long term it may do something as it keep you more on their mind, but I’ve yet to see that actually do anything to my bottom line.

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