45 percent of customers say they’re more likely to visit businesses that respond to their reviewsOnline Reviews Survey
Small business owners are more social-media-savvy than ever. They’re also spending a lot more time blogging, liking, sharing, and tweeting – all in an effort to drum up business.
In a research study conducted recently by marketing software company Vertical Response, results showed that 90 percent of small businesses are on Facebook, while close to 70 percent are on Twitter.
The study surveyed almost 500 small businesses, 93 percent of which had less than 100 employees. (Approximately 43 percent were the owners, CEOs, or proprietors of their companies.) Other highlights of the Vertical Response’s social media study include:
- 43 percent of respondents said that they spend 6 or more hours every week on social media marketing. 11 percent, meanwhile, admitted to spending 11 to 20 hours a week.
- Compared to one year ago, 66 percent of small business owners are now spending more time on social media.
- Social media budgets are also on the rise. For every small business that has decided to decrease their budget, there are 4 times more business owners who have decided to increase their social media budget. In fact, 57.5 percent of small business owners are already spending $26 or more on tools that publish or analyze their social media data.
Somewhat surprisingly, company or business blogs continue to enjoy popularity. 55 percent of SMB owners, in fact, have a blog, and 45 percent of them spend 1 to 3 hours to crank out a blog post.
However, alternative social networks are not getting as much love. LinkedIn, for example, attracted only 4 percent participation from small business owners, who are also virtually ignoring reviews aggregator and recommendation service Google+ Local (3 percent participation) as well as pinboard-style content sharing service Pinterest (2 percent participation).
Participation, moreover, doesn’t necessarily mean passion. It’s just that businesses feel like they have to establish and build their presence on social media. Despite the time, money, and effort they’re spending on social media marketing, 33 percent wish that they could spend less time doing so. Wrote John Koetsier of VentureBeat: “I suppose (this) means that they are not yet seeing the kinds of returns that justify their investment.”
For more facts and figures, check out the infographic below: