Social media not yet showing much ROI for publishers

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Lulu Phongmany writes that social media is a game changer “as important as search and mobile” when it comes to how people use the Internet. But, for publishers, the return on investment is just not there yet.

Phongmany, the head of business development for iVillage.co.uk, reports that 50 percent of the referrals to U.K. newspaper sites are from Google, but only 0.1 percent come from Facebook.

She argues that social media is paying off for some, like Dell and Zynga (maker of FarmVille), but not for media companies:

“We’re not yet seeing consistent evidence of significant ROI outside of retail and gaming. Now that there is significant spend[ing] coming from brands and an increased investment in social media efforts from publishers, the expectation to produce ROI will be more important than ever. It’s make or break time for social media.”

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