It would seem impossible to imagine modern business without social media, and apparently the majority of UK firms think so too.
Existing research from 2011 unveiled that UK small businesses lagged behind international counterparts in social media use, however, I came across a new study this morning, published in Inspiresme.co.uk, which showed that three in four small businesses are using social network platforms at present.
Almost three in five intend to increase investment in the channel, with the research showing that only 3% of the companies surveyed have plans to quit using social media.
The survey, based on data from 500 UK small firms, unveiled that businesses are feeling more comfortable with social media marketing. A quarter of the polled stated that improving customer engagement was their main goal, while similar proportions claimed that improving brand awareness on social sites was their top priority.
Unlike bigger companies, UK SMEs opt for Facebook as a marketing platform, with 55% promoting their business there, whereas 48% prefer to use LinkedIn and 40% go for Twitter. Google +, YouTube and blogs prove to be less popular among SMEs, with 17% investing time and resources to maintain a presence there.
More than 85% of the polled said they allocate up to 10% of their marketing spend to social sites, while 8% invest twice as much. Only about 0.1% of UK small businesses spend over 50% of their marketing budget on social platforms.