To make is official, Sensis, one of the leading resources of information and statistics and provide of the yellow pages, white pages and trading post – has released a social media report highlighting the importance of social media and why businesses should be involved in the channel.
The major gap found in the report was the obvious difference between the amount of users of social media vs the percentage of businesses that are active in it. 62% of Australians use social media (97% of these users use Facebook) whereas on 14% of small businesses, 25% of medium sized businesses and 50% of large business have included the channel in their marketing mix. Although you would think something similar of a medium like television, there is lower barrier of entry when it comes to social media in terms of cost and access so there is a huge opportunity for businesses to grow their sales and awareness through this channel. Those businesses that are already involved in social media usually spend less than 5% of total marketing budget on the venture and many are still in the experimentation phase. It seems that most business’s involved in social media do not accurately measure the return and have no strategy to participating in the medium.
We all use online search to research what we need to buy and social media is no different. What’s interesting is that over 1/3 of the respondents that used social media to research products ended up purchasing (70% of those purchases were online). Most social media savvy consumers also read and average of 6 reviews before making a purchase. The users that are interested in businesses online are usually after information such as discounts, giveaways, invitation to events and general product information.
From those businesses that have been actively and documenting their social media participation, there is no doubt that business’s are underestimating the potential of social media and increased spend and activity in the medium will increase in the following years. The big question is, are you doing it right?
For the full Sensis report please find it here