The Difference Between "Impressions" And "Expressions"

In the world of advertising, an “impression” is how many times people look at a website (or other forms of media/advertising.) I just read a fascinating article in the Harvard Business Review about how Coca-Cola is shifting from measuring impressions to measuring expressions.

Expressions are the comments that customers make on Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites. One person comments on Twitter to their followers. If they have 500 followers, some of those people “re-tweet” or share it with their friends. Same thing on Facebook. Before you know it, one impression from an advertisement or experience becomes hundreds, even thousands (and possibly millions) of expressions.

Here’s my take on this: Social media is now accepted as a powerful marketing and advertising strategy. Still, we have just scratched the surface of how to use this to our advantage. New ideas on how to use exploit this medium will continue to surface. Paying close attention to how many people visit your website or “like” your Facebook page is important. But while those impressions are strong, it is your follower’s expressions that will help grow and strengthen your brand.

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