Charlene Li of Forrester Research has posted about recent research on the ROI of external blogging for corporations. The research report ($) is aimed at marketers who need a way to quantify the value of blogging. Li advises, "By going through the exercise of defining and quantifying the benefits, costs, and risks of a blog, you'll be educating your C-level executives while also demonstrating the discipline that they expect." She also describes the ROI exercise as "highly subjective, requires tremendous judgment, and is open to interpretation. But it is a starting point for an otherwise nebulous activity."
Using scenarios, General Motors can understand the risk and impact of increases and decreases of a key metric — the number of press mentions — on the value of the blog. With this knowledge in hand, General Motors can make critical businesses decisions, such as whether to invest heavily in innovations that will rekindle press attention.We developed a framework that allows companies to track and measure the benefits of external blogs.
If common sense isn't enough, Forrester determined that comments on the blog were equivalent to a focus group, saving about $180,000 in costs for a traditional focus group per month.