When approaching social media with advertising, there’s always pros and cons to keep an eye out for. With the right campaign, a company can easily find great outreach with its product. However, on the flip side of that, there are challenges, such as making sure that something isn’t too promotional for its own good (thus losing the audience it was initially targeted for), or pushing too much in a certain direction.

Companies face these social challenges regularly, and a recently report conducted by SimplyMeasured and TrustRadius {link no longer active} across 600 social media marketers show just where these challenges lie, according to Social Times {link no longer active}.

Out of those surveyed, 60 percent believe that measuring the ROI of social media is the biggest challenge to overcome, followed by connecting social activities to business outcomes and securing internal resources. The chart below highlights just how high each one is specifically ranked.

Other difficulties brought up with social programs include developing for a specific marketing media strategy, securing internal resources, integrating a variety of social tools and monitoring the competition. Three different groups of marketers were polled, including those for small, mid-sized and enterprise-based companies.

Social Times believes that the reason social marketing teams may be struggling with trying to secure resources for social may be from using “vanity metrics” to measure success. 80 percent of those polled stated that “engagement” — including likes on Facebook, shares, comments, followers and other parts of a network — are the most important metrics when it comes to social programs, an indication that they’re getting some form of attention.

Meanwhile, 32 percent believe that leads were important, while 28 percent noted that revenue is a key metric with any campaign like this.

One respondent pointed out that connecting social aspects to sales can be “incredibly difficult,” saying, “Even with sophisticated programs and services like Eloqua, DemandGen, SFDC (Salesforce.com), etc., there is still the difficulty understanding what works and what does not. At the end of the day, social media is just one part of a greater whole than a customer is exposed to.”

Does that mean companies will stop trying on the social front? Certainly not. But don’t be surprised if they take a more cautious route while trying to gauge what kind of success it could bring.

The full report can be found here. {link no longer active}