ROI needs a rethink. Not because it doesn’t make business sense to measure your given return on investment, but rather because it is often driving the wrong kinds of marketing efforts. While staring at the numbers is far better that throwing yet more money into analog media, it can often lead to approaching your audience from the completely wrong angle. Instead of creating time and conversations, you are interrupting your potential customers and luring them into your site/store at all possible costs. You measure everything at the last click or sale to justify your marketing spend. If marketers and brands would take a different approach, in which the sole purpose is to drive interest and engagement, the true value exchange would not simply happen at the point of conversion, but during the usage of the actual service/device that has been exchanged for interest and money.
The slide share below goes into a bit more detail around this. I shared this while giving a talk at the Social Media Forum 2012 here in Dubai.