Nate Elliott is principal researcher at Forrester. Recently, he published this blog post – called ‘Why Social Media Marketing Metrics Really Matter?’

This blog post on social media is good – particularly the chart below that shows the different stakeholders in an organization – like the CEO! – and what their perspective is – or should be – on social media.

Different social media marketing metrics matter to different internal stakeholder groups

Most CEO’s will understand this chart.  It’s what they’ve been saying all along – “I don’t care about Tweets and Friends – gimme sales!”

It’s a reminder that social media isn’t just about social media – it’s a business tool – and it’s effectiveness is, can and should be measured like any other tool.

It’s also a good reminder that it’s ok if Jenny-in-charge-of-Tweeting seems a little more hung up on her followers than than the company’s latest quarterly results – so long as Jenny is clear what the message is she’s supposed to be Tweeting about.

And this chart – simple as it is – could likely be used to stir up a few management meetings.

You could use it to make the social strategists and community managers more strategic – “don’t just socialize – here’s what we’re trying to achieve”.

You could use it to make the marketing executives more precise – “what is it exactly we are trying to achieve with our brand through social media?” – and more tactical – “how does tweeting that meet our brand goals?”.

And finally, you could use it to comfort the executive suite – including the CEO – that social media really is important, and measureable – as in “wow, this social media stuff is important to our business – and even my job”.

Finally, maybe it will help more companies finally get into social media. It’s fairly obvious the CEO really doesn’t need be a Facebook marketing genius (putting  a good spin on a LinkedIn profile really is good enough!).

All the CEO needs to do is make sure the financial results are being measured (including the investment in resources needed to man the social media oars) and let the real geniuses do their thing!