70% of companies worldwide have social media presence

Social Media channel advertising users

As the advertising market becomes more competitive, marketers have to come up with fresh ideas to engage consumers. According to new research, UK marketers are missing out on opportunities given by social media.

A recent study from KPMG showed that UK businesses are lagging behind their US and Chinese counterparts in social media marketing. At present, less than half of the polled UK companies are using social media, while the percentage in the US and China reached 72% and 83% respectively. Worldwide, 70% of companies have established a presence on social platforms and using social sites is generally seen as an effective business tool.

While four in five companies globally believe that social media benefits outweigh the risks, the number of UK firms that share this opinion is almost twice smaller.

Mark Guinibert, customer and channel partner at KPMG, said that in order to remain competitive in the market during 2012, UK businesses will have to cope with three main challenges. Firstly, brands will have to find ways to engage consumers through motivators, such as games. Secondly, brands can no longer ignore social media-based discussions and it is likely that in 2012 even the most reluctant businesses start to participate in such. Finally, companies need to realise that transparency is the new rule of the game, as social media leaves nothing to hide and makes brands look more trustworthy.

Guinibert also noted that neglecting social media is shutting off an important channel to reach a vast audience of potential customers.