Today much of marketing has a social hue to it. Marketers are flocking to social media platforms for leads/customers – basically, revenue either in a current or deferred form.
Here are some statistics to demonstrate just how significant a trend this has become:
- Social media marketing budgets are set to double over the next five years
- 52% marketers surveyed have found at least one customer last year through Facebook
- 43% marketers found a customer via LinkedIn
- 9 out of 10 brands surveyed use Instagram
The ease of use and immediacy of social media make it an invaluable tool for small businesses. Small and Medium Businesses (SMBs) are using social media to grow their businesses and 25% of SMBs have planned to increase their social media spend in 2014.
LinkedIn Not the ‘Go to’ Site for SMBs
LinkedIn has long been considered the ideal social network for businesses and professional engagement. However, when it comes to SMBs, social networks other than LinkedIn are also doing well.
The numbers above reiterate the fact that LinkedIn is not ‘the’ most preferred social media site when it comes to SMBs. Twitter, which is not necessarily a business networking platform, is close behind LinkedIn.
According to BIA/Kelsey, with 24.3% SMBs active on the site, Twitter has achieved a fair degree of traction with this audience. Twitter has beefing up its ads API in an effort to attract more brands and the effort seems to be paying off.
Facebook – The Unquestioned Champion…
Through continuous efforts to strengthen its advertising portfolio, Facebook has managed to cater to brands’ marketing needs. 52% SMBs surveyed by BIA/Kelsey are active on the site and recent statistics released by Facebook shows that it has 25 million active SMB pages. That’s an impressive number.
Facebook is definitely doing things right to have these many SMBs using the network for marketing. A recent study by MediaPost stating that 83% SMBs use Facebook re-emphasizes its dominance.
What can SMBs do to further their growth through social media?
SMBs are really gearing up to drive high growth rates with aggressive marketing particularly on social media platforms. In order to push up growth better, SMBs need to do the following:
- 30% of searches will have local intent by next year. This is a valuable pointer to drive sales. Increased focus on local marketing will help SMBs drive more people to their business and improves chances of conversion.
- Introduce deals and coupons for local customers to redeem. This will spruce up local traction through local search queries.
- They can use social media tools like Pinterest 'Place' pins to drive growth.
- Start off with small social media spends and then scale up depending on particular platform growth.
Do you have anything else to add to this? Let us know!
Image Courtesy: BIA Kelsey