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Measuring the Impact of Social Media on Business Profit & Success

A Fortune 500 Perspective

Cong Li and Don Stacks

An organization can have a high number of «likes» on its Facebook page and lots of «followers» on its Twitter account, but does that mean anything from a financial perspective? Is it worth the organization’s effort to maintain an active presence on social media in order to generate more revenue? Is it possible to use social media metrics such as the number of «likes» and the number of «followers» to predict an organization’s «success» even though those metrics are nonfinancial indicators? Prior research studies have looked at how organizations should utilize social media, but few studies have provided strong empirical evidence to support how the outcome of using social media should be measured and why. Focusing on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and YouTube, this book examines how Fortune 500 companies use social media. Collected over a five-year period, the authors assess the companies’ social media activities and their business performance data, such as stock return, total revenue, net income, and earnings per share. These data, both financial and nonfinancial, are matched and statistically analyzed to see whether a company’s social media activities are significantly associated with its business performance.
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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Li, Cong. Measuring the impact of social media on business profit and success: a Fortune 500 perspective / Cong Li, Don Stacks. pages cm Includes bibliographical references and indexes. 1. Social media—Economic aspects. 2. Business communication—Technological innovations. 3. Business enterprises—Information technology. I. Stacks, Don W. II. Title. HM742.L4298 658.85—dc23 2015009558 ISBN 978-1-4331-2579-9 (hardcover) ISBN 978-1-4331-2578-2 (paperback) ISBN 978-1-4539-1590-5 (e-book)

Bibliographic information published by Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek. Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the “Deutsche Nationalbibliografie”; detailed bibliographic data are available on the Internet at http://dnb.d-nb.de/.

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