We had a demo from Radian 6 today on sourcing and measuring social media and I have to say that it’s a pretty impressive piece of kit. You can derive all sorts of metrics from it, such as Twitter followers, forum posters, and the number of unique commentators on a given thread. Thinking about it, it’s only really useful for quantifying metrics – anything else and it’s well and truly screwed.  Some of my other posts have gone on about the need to understand what an organisation is trying to measure before analysing social media for them, but the more I look at this, the more I think that there’s little to be gleaned from simply adding up the number of hits, unique viewers or even number of posts when measuring the success of online and offline communications. Using qualitative methodologies may indeed be slower, but it isn’t that much more expensive and the results are certainly much more insightful.