Research is needed to identify the right brand channels/mediums to reach their customer base. Primary research to find existing customers and targeted demographics/psychographics. Also using internal team members for information as to where they have seen customers online is also good idea. (This is also a good way to find your SME.)
Each brand channel has its own metrics and we always need to keep in mind that little thing we call acquisition.
i. Tracking which medium leads to the most acquisitions (YouTube).
ii. Tracking which medium leads to the highest level of interaction (customer service). Measuring the quality of that interaction on a scale that the business has created (1-10).
iii. Tracking which medium creates the most traffic overall (Facebook application).
iv. Tracking which medium the user spends the most time with (casual gaming).
v. Tracking which medium brings the highest level of complaints (blogs, forums) and more importantly how they were dealt with and the end result.
Many of these technologies/methodologies are really in their infancy and measurement should start with ROI. Overtime, as these mediums mature and converge (i.e. interactive TV) it will become clearer as to how well something is working. Measurement is always going to need to be a daily thing with the potential for change in direction (updated tactics) built in.
That is what the Internet provides and as we move towards a CPA model it will become more and more important. I also want to be clear that if something does a great job of building repoire (as evidenced by feedback) but does not pan out in regards to ROI, it should not necessarily be abandoned. The internet and the brand channels/mediums that is contains are evolving and will be for quite some time.
Marketers will need to be vigilant to insure they are doing what they need to successfully create a fluid corporate social graph.
Note: I'd like to thank Michael for his time and valuable contribution