Companies Using Social Media Saw Positive Results in 2010
Inc. 500 companies who have been using social media as part of their marketing strategy experienced positive results in business and the results continue to improve for 2011 in the U.S. More Jamaican companies have begun to benefit from social media marketing and finding their own success with the strategy. The rate at which Jamaican companies are adopting social media marketing as a major part of their marketing strategy is still slow, and there are many large local corporations who are yet to harness its full power.
The Potential for Small Businesses
In reality, large corporations in certain niches are not as powerful as they once were and small businesses with the right social media marketing strategy can capture their own space within their niche gaining loyal, long-term customers because of the relationships they build through social media.
Small businesses can now launch out at zero cost and begin interacting with prospects on sites like Facebook and Twitter offering daily value, deals, build relationships and gain valuable feedback from the community without using traditional, expensive advertising techniques.
More companies within the Inc. 500 are using social media as part of their marketing strategies. For example, Amazon, which was one of the first companies to adopt social media in a major way and abandon TV ads saw a 30% increase in profits the following year after implementing their new strategy. Social media is now being viewed as very valuable as many companies are seeing great results.
These firms, which include the fastest-growing private companies, have been using a mix of tactics, with Facebook as the most popular. According to a study released in January 2011 from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research, 71% of companies used Facebook in 2010, up from 61% in 2009. Twitter, at 59% in 2010, and blogging, at 50%, are also still high on the list.
If a company has used social media, it has most likely also seen success, the study found. 85% percent of companies viewed Facebook as successful, a significant jump from 54% in 2009. Yet Facebook hasn’t matched message or bulletin boards, with 93% reporting it was a successful tactic. Foursquare also saw a significant increase in usefulness; it wasn’t even measured in 2009, yet in 2010, 75% of companies reported it was a successful tactic.
* Interesting to note that Facebook success rates have gone up from 54% to 85% while services like twitter and blogging have gone down.
As social media becomes more popular, as its influence and effect on consumer purchasing trends becoming more evident, the overall perception should change even further. According to the study, more companies view it as important, with 86% reporting social media technologies to be somewhat or very important to their business and marketing strategies in 2010, up from 79% in 2009. And growth is even stronger among those who consider it “very important.”
It is key to the success of your business to begin testing the waters with social media marketing with the goal of finding the right social networking mix for you and your business. Focus on building relationships based on honesty, helpfulness and trust and customers will be attracted to your business.
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