According to survey data from marketing specialist Constant Contact, small businesses are becoming more comfortable with social media marketing and are using it more when engaging with customers. The Fall 2011 Attitudes and Outlook Survey revealed a significant reduction in perceived barriers to adoption of social media marketing among small business survey participants. The survey found increased awareness that social media marketing need not be time-consuming or difficult
When asked why they use social media marketing today, 83 percent said it is low cost (up from 72 percent in the spring 2011 study), 67 percent said it is easy to use (up from 54 percent in the spring 2011 study), 51 percent said their customers use social media channels (up from 38 percent in the spring 2011 study) and 45 percent said it didn’t take a lot of time (up from 31 percent in the spring 2011).
Of those using social media marketing, Facebook continues to be the tool of choice for small businesses, with 96 percent reporting using the tool. Twitter is quickly gaining ground; usage surged in the last six months, from 60 percent in spring 2011 to 76 percent today.
One issue that consumers complain about is being heard on the different social media outlets, which is often an issue with the business having time to interact with their consumers. The survey found that roughly 60 percent of small businesses respond to all comments on social media platforms, whether those posts are positive or negative. Those who don’t respond report that they don’t have time, they don’t think it’s necessary or they don’t know what to say.
“Plain and simple, customers want small businesses to interact with them, whether that’s on email or via their social media platform of choice, be it Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn,” said Mark Schmulen, general manager of social media at Constant Contact.. “The great news for small businesses is that they already know all about providing a great customer experience, and they are showing that they can carry that over to the world of social media. It’s a great example of how small businesses are taking advantage of their smaller scale to make a huge impact with these tools.”
If you are not sure how to get started on building your social media network or have already set it up but don’t have the time to continuously update and interact with it, call Community Pathway to help you get started. We are low cost and our services end up paying for themselves with the increased sales your business will experience.