Whilst it seems like the world and his wife have a Facebook profile, apparently SMEs are getting left behind – more than half simply don’t ‘do’ social media
Social media is a huge part of our lives. For this reason it’s become a great tool to help small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) interact with their customer base. In light of this you would think its uptake amongst businesses would be nigh on universal. Unfortunately you’d be wrong. According to research conducted by group discounting site Groupon less than half of SMEs have an active social media presence.
The vast majority of the survey’s respondents recognised the huge benefits engaging with social media can bring, with nine out of 10 believing it can aid growth. In addition, more than half acknowledged that using the likes of Twitter and Facebook could help them reach a wider audience, with 16% feeling it could help them interact with customers more easily. Yet, despite all of the incentives for using social media only 42% of those polled were actively using it.
There were some very clear reasons why a social media strategy would be difficult for a lot of SMEs to maintain. A lack of confidence with the medium was an off-putting factor for more than a fifth of small enterprises. Much more significant was the feeling that a campaign would be very time-consuming to manage, with 54% of respondents identifying this as an issue. Although this shows there is a significant way to go before the majority of SMEs fully embrace social media, it at least demonstrates how seriously many businesses are taking it.
Fortunately help is never far from hand. Responding to the needs identified by the survey, Groupon Works have produced a guide, attempting to answer some of the most common questions identified by SMEs. It’s still relatively early days for businesses and social media – plenty of time to forge a lasting relationship.