A Scenic Tour of the Online World

Social Media Use Rising, Integration Lagging

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

We’re using social media in the business world, but not well, it seems.

According to February 2011 InSites Consulting study (via MarketingProfs), a majority of US firms have social media presences, but very few are integrating their social media efforts broadly.

A majority of companies report that they fall into one of three categories – doing nothing with social media, taking first steps, and piloting social media programs. Only 16% report having integrated social media.

InSites reports that social media integration improves marketing communications, customer satisfaction and (not surprising given the preceding two) overall revenue, so it seems only a matter of time before the majority move to get serious.

Small companies lag their larger counterparts. That seems counterintuitive to me. I would expect that innovation would be easier in smaller firms where there are fewer barriers. Presumably, resource restraints are a larger issue for smaller firms.

Resource issues or not, if you’re not making use of social media in a tactical and strategic way, you’re in good company, but you’re missing an opportunity to establish your presence. And the window to achieving real returns continues to expand.

(Believe it or not, there is a window between the  super-hype period – aka “everyone’s talking about it and no-one’s doing it” – and the point of super-saturation.)

Hard to say how long that window will last, but it’s worth hitting. And for most, being too early is better than being too late.

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