Social networks (MXH) are gradually becoming a useful tool for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in all sectors. So, how have SMEs used social media for their marketing activities? What role are social networks playing in the operations of SMEs?
Let's read a survey of 12 marketing trends on social media for SMEs, conducted by Social Media Examiner in the US and some other countries. The survey involved 3,720 marketers business owners and self-employed people, in which:
- 82% of the participants are working in SMEs with the size of fewer than 100 people
- 37% of activities in SMEs are 2-10 people
- 23% are independent.
The article will provide useful information about:
- Is social media useful for SMEs or not?
- How much time are SMEs spending on marketing on social networks?
- What Type of Content can SMEs use?
- Which social media should SMEs buy advertising?
Let's take a look at the 12 trends below and reconsider your company's 2016 social media marketing strategy.
Trend # 1: Social media is very important to SMEs
96% of respondents use social media in marketing activities, and 92% of them agree that social media is very important in business activities.
However, survey participants are those who are selected from a random sample of 300,000 people and maybe "more interested" in social media than those who did not.
Trend # 2: Facebook dominates SMEs' social marketing activities
Facebook is the social media used by 93% of marketers, followed by Twitter with 79%. In the next year, 62% intend to invest more in Facebook for their marketing activities, 66% will invest more in activities on Twitter, Youtube, Linkedin.
Twitter is regaining market share from Facebook, and with growth potential, see what Twitter can offer next year.
YouTube is used by many large businesses. This stark difference can be seen with 71% of businesses per 100 people using YouTube, while the figure for SMEs is 38%.
Trend # 3: B2C businesses use social networks differently from B2B businesses
B2B Enterprises choose Linkedin as the main social network to connect, while B2C Enterprises choose Facebook. This makes sense because B2B businesses use social networks to find partners in a specific field, and who work in that field, and Linkedin meets this. And Facebook is where focus "consumers" around the world.
71% of B2B Enterprise marketers want to learn about Linkedin next year, but only 18% of them use Linkedin advertising services. And the proportion of people who will use Facebook Ads up to 75%.
Trend # 4: Most SMEs don't know if their Facebook activities are working
92% of SMEs agree that social media is very important to their businesses, and most of them use Facebook for marketing, but most say they are not sure if Facebook is effective or not.
"Efficiency" here means "brand building" or "customer relationship". It can also be about increasing profits and bringing in more leads. Bottom line is, most businesses aren't sure if Facebook will help them achieve their goals. That means, they don't have a specific goal, or they don't know how to measure marketing performance. Even more shocking, despite a large number of Facebook users, only a third of them actually know whether Facebook is effective or not.
Most marketers are unsure of the impact of social media use (though it's an issue that needs attention). In addition to the benefits of creating a complete strategy with clear goals and measurement methods, it takes a long time for SMEs to measure the effectiveness of marketing campaigns. Businesses simply accept the concepts set by marketing and communication service companies, that Facebook is a "very cheap" channel to introduce products and services to target customers. Of course, all those "hype" still bring potential value to those who use Facebook's advertising services.
On the other hand, 44% of survey participants have just used social media for less than 2 years. Such a short time can not make them understand clearly about social networks. Meanwhile, for the most part, effectiveness on social networks will require a long time (usually greater than 1 year). SMEs may be impatient and do not allow the Marketing team the opportunity to take advantage of social networks effectively.
Trend # 5: SMEs are expected to expand on Facebook next year
Despite the effectiveness of Marketing on Facebook is still relatively vague, but still, about 62% of businesses plan to expand their marketing activities on Facebook in 2016. 68% want to learn more about Facebook Marketing, and 53% have plans. plan to increase the budget for Facebook Ads this year.
Those who just started entering the field of Marketing on social networks probably will not need to "mind" that they are missing a "gold mine" at Facebook. Because, Facebook has been present since 2006, but many SMEs are still "struggling" to take advantage of all the features to increase interaction and effectiveness of Marketing on Facebook.
Trend # 6: Most businesses spend over 6 hours per week on social networks
Under the pressure of responsibility, most business owners will always worry and think about how much time they will spend keeping the target public interacting on social networks. Tools like Hootsuite, Post Planner can reduce the time spent on social networks, but marketing on social networks really takes longer than that. The numbers below will give businesses and marketers a clearer idea of how long their competitors are investing in social networks.
33% of studies said that they spend 1-5 hours per week implementing marketing activities on social networks, however, only about 25% spend 6-10 hours per week doing this.
Most businesses with a size of 2-10 will spend 1-5 hours or 6-10 hours doing Marketing on social networks each week. Similarly, only about 19% of marketers spend more than 20 hours developing this activity.
Trend # 7: Increasing "brand exposure" is the biggest benefit of social networks
While “brand exposure” - which can be understood as the position and frequent appearance of a brand in the minds of consumers - is a very difficult thing to measure, 90% of marketers and business owners think that this is the biggest benefit of social media. Social media actually gives them a higher position in the minds of more consumers.
Trend # 8: Increasing website traffic is the second biggest benefit of social media
77% of marketers and business owners believe that clicking on the company's website/brand from LinkedIn or Facebook is the second biggest benefit of the social network. In addition to social media, Google and other tools also help in increasing traffic.
The longer a business does Marketing on social media, the more traffic will increase.
Trend # 9: MXH saves on marketing costs for SMEs
Before 2014, social networks emerged as a communication channel that helped businesses reach the public at a low price, even for free like Facebook. And as more and more people know about Facebook, more and more businesses use Facebook, Facebook starts to change its policy: collecting money for advertising. Advertising prices increase, of course, profits will decrease.
At this point, large enterprises will have to hire outsourced workers to maintain operations on their social networks. But SMEs with less than 10 employees who spend more than 6 hours on social networks every day still think that social networks are helping to save their overall marketing costs.
Trend # 10: SMEs will make a lot of profit from selling on social networks
The ultimate goal of marketing is to increase sales and leads. Compared to SEO and other forms of advertising, using social media faces many challenges in increasing direct sales.
In this survey, more than 50% of people doing marketing on social networks for 2 years admitted that social media helped them increase sales. More than 70% of people doing Marketing on social networks in 5 years see this.
Some other reliable surveys of Internet Retailers', Statista, and Shareaholic also show that:
- Sales through social media of 500 companies increased by25%, specifically from 2.62 billion USD in 2013 to 3.3 billion USD in 2014.
- 31.24% of website traffic comes from social networks.
- A leap in the social media trade will definitely take place this year.
Trend # 11: Facebook dominates Ads
Facebook Ads are not only cheap, but they can also categorize the public by location, location, and other basic information.
Advertising on Linked In and Twitter is also considered by marketers. Advertising on Instagram or Pinterest also has the potential to grow.
According to the survey, up to 53% of marketers definitely continue to use Facebook Ads, 38% use Google and Twitter, and 31% choose to grow on all 3 channels. Very few people intend to buy ads on other channels like Linked In or Foursquare.
From another perspective, it can be seen that with less advertising, less competition. For example, Pinterest - MXH is predicted to "make things" in 2016. For consumers, Pinterest will be a tool to help keep ideas, things they need, and to want to buy. Thus, Pinterest may not help increase traffic, but it does cause the desire to buy.
Trend # 12: Content Types on Social Networks
Types of visual content (Visual Content) and blogs are currently the most selected with 71% and 70%. Video is only ranked 3rd with 57% due to high technology requirements on a budget.
Although Visual Content and Video are more eye-catching, marketers still think that Blog is the most important content. This comes from the behavior of consumers to carefully survey and select before buying. Marketers find that a long blog post will provide more complete and reliable information than a short photo or video.
If you are a Small Business or Small Business, use your money to make a worthy investment.
So how are you managing your social media marketing? Do you agree with the results of the above surveys? Do you have your own social media marketing story? Tell us about it in the comments section!