Interesting news for SMEs: Social Networking is a successful strategy

First published here on the Social Media Marketing blog of Dr E. Constantinides (Efthymios).

According to a just published study of Regus Media Center the adoption of social networking as business strategy by SMEs is growing: the main findings of the study:

•Social Networks are now actively used by between half and three quarters of companies worldwide for various networking functions

• However, 40% of companies globally have successfully used social networks to find new customers, scotching the comments of pundits who deny that such networks produce hard business outcomes

• The importance of these networks to marketing activities is witnessed by the fact that 27% of firms globally actively devote marketing budget to social networking activity in order to reach and retain existing customers

• Social networks are mainly used by business people to stay in touch with business contacts (58%), getting together with special interest groups (54%), finding out useful business information (54%), and organising/connecting/managing customer groups (51%)

• Surprisingly few business people (22%) have used business social networks to find a new job

• A hardcore of sceptics exists (34%) who do not believe business social networks will ever be a significant method of reaching customers and prospects, although this proportion may diminish as examples of successful practice are more widely publicised

• There is only a mild differential between the small, medium and large company usage of business social networks, revealing that usage patterns are largely company size neutral

• Of the specific industries surveyed, ICT, Retail, Media & Marketing and Consultancy were above average in their use of business social networks. Manufacturing, Financial Services and Healthcare were below average

Source: Regus Media Center