February 21, 2012
SMBs Forecasted to Spend $7.8 Billion for Social Media Marketing in 2016
Social media is becoming more and more popular as a way for local businesses to market their brand, products, and services. And it makes sense. With a relatively easy-to-use platform and easily accessible user pool (in the millions on many platforms), social media can be a relatively inexpensive way to target leads and the consumer population. Not to mention, social media platforms are becoming more and more business friendly by providing tools and resources to help support local businesses, such as Facebook’s Ads, Insights analytical tool, and vanity URL creation capability (which can aid in getting found in external search engines), or Twitter’s platform redesign, to help make finding what users are looking for easier. Plus, they’ve already been a few business-focused social networking sites around long before Twitter and Facebook came around (i.e., LinkedIn).
Borrell Associates released a new report Main Street Goes Social: SMBs Give A Big Thumbs-Up To Social Media” offered through Research and Markets that captures social media practices of more than 4000 Small and Medium Sized businesses (SMBs). Some of the stats and forecasts summarized in the report include:
· SMBs spent $1.1 billion on social media advertising in 2011
· Almost 2/3 of SMBs reported having a social media presence last year (primarily on Facebook)
2012 and 2013
· SMBs are forecasted to spend $2 billion in 2012
· SMBs are forecasted to spend $3.9 billion in 2013
· SMBs plan on spending 13.7 percent of online advertising budgets for social media in 2012
· 80% of SMBs are forecasted to have a social media presence by the end of 2012
· Social media is listed as the 3rd highest category for online spending in the coming year ahead of streaming video, mobile, and banner ads.
It’s obvious that social media has and continues to create an impression on local businesses across the board, and Borrell estimates that SMBs will spend $7.8 billion—a sevenfold increase—in 2016!
The question is: how effective will SMBs be in implementing their social media strategies? Many local businesses tend to jump on board a few too many social media platforms all at once without thinking through their strategy. It’s important to ensure that when you’re looking at social media networks, they fit within your overall goals and marketing strategy. It’s also a good idea to start small and grow; in other words, choose a couple social media networks and fully set up your profile and optimize your sites to grow as quickly as possible. Then, once you’re stable with those, add additional social media platforms that align with your overall strategy and build your networks on them.
I completely agree that business of all size should participate in social media for a variety of reasons. They should just approach the subject and implementation wisely for maximum benefit without wasting time and money.
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