SMEs flock to social media

Small businesses have seen a dramatic rise in their use of social networks for business purposes over the past year, research finds.

According to a survey of 1300 small businesses by recruitment firm, 91 percent of respondents used social networks for business purposes last year – up from the 60 percent recorded in the previous year’s survey.

Companies use the medium to recruit new staff, find work and market themselves.

The findings back up a recent Deloitte report commissioned by Facebook which claimed that the social networking website benefits the UK economy to the tune of more than £2 billion a year.

According to Facebook’s COO Sheryl Sandberg the report ‘shows that Facebook is about a lot more than sharing pictures or keeping up with friends. Increasingly, social media means growth and jobs. Social media is proving particularly valuable for small and medium-sized businesses, which form the backbone of the European economy.’ founder Xenios Thrasyvoulou adds, ‘There’s a perception that Facebook is almost exclusively used for personal relationships, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. As our survey findings demonstrate, Facebook is an increasingly crucial technology for businesses as well.’

Social media uptake high among SMEs

Small businesses are embracing social media to source new business and stay in touch with existing customers, finds research.

According to a survey of 862 small and medium enterprises by CRM vendor Really Simple Systems 62 per cent report that they now use social networking in everyday business.

Some 92 per cent of those using it do so to keep in touch with existing customers, whilst 78 per cent are using it to find new customers.

LinkedIn is the most widely-used social media tool by small businesses, with 83 per cent of social networking businesses using the tool.

Facebook (used by 72 per cent of respondents) is the next most popular means of conducting ‘social business’, followed closely by Twitter (65 per cent).

John Paterson, CEO of Really Simple Systems says, ‘We all know that enterprise companies are rapidly adopting social media as a means of communicating with existing customers and prospects, but it’s surprising to see that adoption among small businesses was so advanced.”

Alan Dobie

Alan Dobie

Alan was assistant editor at Vitesse Media Plc (previous owner of before moving on to a content producer role at Reed Business Information. He has over 17 years of experience in the...

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