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VP Enterprise Marketing for PBworks,  first investor in and previously interim CEO of Ustream.TV.  Chris is an active angel investor and the founder and Chairman of the Harvard Business School Technology Alumni Association (HBSTECH). Chris earned two degrees from Stanford University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. His personal blogs are Adventures in Capitalism and Ask the Harvard MBA.

6 responses to “The True Way To Measure E2.0 ROI”

  1. Ron Teitelbaum

    Mr. Yeh,

    Let me try one more time but since I have a few more characters I can be a bit more clear. I’m not arguing that the ultimate goal is not to increase ROI. My argument is that when a major disruptive innovation comes only the people that adapt survive. In that environment any business advantage, efficiency to provide headroom to grow without significant marginal cost, or customer retention (which doesn’t increase sales but stops you from bleeding to death) can help to put you on the list of survivors. In my opinion, adoption of new social tools for business will lead to that business advantage and even though it may not directly result in immediate ROI it may it may keep you from losing market and becoming extinct.

    You could argue the disruptive force, and you are, but I wouldn’t begin to count things at this stage. We are seeing a shift but that shift is still being studied within some huge corporations. These tools are just starting to get rolled out. They have been in Technology labs, and innovation centers within companies. They are proving their worth. I would argue not that there is no ROI but that there is and nobody wants to talk about it. We are moving though a huge downturn and companies are holding tightly to their cash. This excess of caution is causing some longer term experiments. Had they seen no ROI these projects would be getting canceled. I just don’t see that happening.

    This leads me to two possible conclusions. You are right, there is no ROI to these tools and the innovation groups at these billion dollar companies are just drinking the e2.0 Koolaid, or it is a lot more difficult to tell right now with the economic downturn just who currently has an advantage. I’m betting that ROI comes later when companies begin to press their advantage and take more risks.

    Ron Teitelbaum
    Teleplace

  2. Ron Teitelbaum

    Mr. Yeh,

    One more comment. It appears that I miss read your post because it was referenced along with other skeptics of e2.0. I apologize for my mistake. I read your article carefully again and noticed that you are making a claim for the “benefits” of ROI study not complaining about the lack of evidence for e2.0.

    It would seem we are much closer to the same opinion that the evidence is not easy to gather but that it does exist. I believe that much of the evidence that would help make a stronger ROI case is currently hidden (on purpose) by innovation groups, and it is masked somewhat by the economic downturn.

    Just saw your video with the facial expressions and they were not that bad!

    Ron Teitelbaum