Last week’s BusinessWeek covers corporate America’s “rush” to hire social media directors:

Across the country, companies like Petco are going through a two-step process. First, they scramble to hire social media officers. Second, they figure out what it is, exactly, that social media officers do. Blending departments—promotion and marketing, customer service and support—and requiring the ability to be shameless boosters while maintaining a light, self-aware tone, the job category is experiencing a boomlet as companies try to keep up with the new media world. The chief social media officer may be supplanting the chief branding officer as the zaniest human resource innovation in memory.

These articles always make me cringe a bit, but you can’t blame big companies for wanting to be active in this space. Towards the end of the piece the topic of metrics comes up:

Metrics used to evaluate success in corporate social media might include: number of Tweets; number of re-Tweets (a Twitter message that’s resent by a follower); instances of “customer recovery,” in which an irate civilian is successfully mollified; an increase in the number of Facebook fans or Twitter followers; and the number of photos of your product that have been posted online.

What about website visits from Facebook and Twitter activity? Or leads or sales? Those seem much more relevant than number of Tweets.