The majority of small businesses still haven’t figured out that social networks can help meet their marketing objectives. Many small businesses are aware that social networks exist, yet remain skeptical on the benefits they can have in their business profits. The survey conducted by Ad-ology shares their findings and the perception small businesses have on social media.
Social media is becoming more popular among small-business owners, and many will be spending more on advertising, marketing and new business development in 2011, which will also impact the amount of resources devoted to social media.
More than 55% of small-business owners view Facebook as somewhat or very beneficial to their business, according to data from Ad-ology, which surveyed 752 US small-business owners. Other sites, such as Twitter and LinkedIn, also received nods from small-business owners, while group-buying sites such as Groupon and LivingSocial were lower on the list. Additionally, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn all saw significant increases in the percentage of small-business owners who view them as beneficial compared to last year. In the prior year’s survey, only 33.2% of respondents called Facebook somewhat or very beneficial, and only 18.5% said the same of Twitter.
Just as several social media sites are useful to small businesses, there are also many objectives companies find social media outreach useful for. Lead generation was the top benefit reported, selected by 57.2% of small-business owners. Ad-ology also found 54% of small-business owners highlighted monitoring what is being said about their businesses. Improving customer experience was another reported benefit of social media.