Newtek Business Services, who runs The Small Business Authority, released their findings of a recent poll conducted for their SB Authority Market Sentiment Survey. This is basically a monthly survey to gather information from independent business owners and can provide some real insight into small business practices, trends, etc. One of the biggest finds this month was that 57% of business owners use social media to attract new customers and 58% use social media to communicate with current customers. 55% also said they use social media as a “significant engine of sales growth” for their businesses. There were 2,200 participants in the survey.
Some may look at this and say “duh”, but when I personally step back and take a look at these findings, it’s hard not to be impressed with how social media has changed the way business is conducted in such a short period of time. I was in college only 10 years ago and MySpace was all the rage. Facebook was just getting started and there was no Twitter. So in less than 10 years, over 50% of American businesses have undergone a transformation as to how they market to and interact with new and current customers. I’m willing to bet that a lot of the small business owners that don’t use social media or find it useful are businesses that have been around longer than 10 years, possibly have owners that aren’t with “the times” of the internet and internet marketing, and have never actually tried social media as an actual tool. Nevertheless, social media is an amazing business tool now and is changing the way business across the world is conducted. In 10 years, the whole landscape has changed and in the next 15-30 years business as we know it today may be in the history books. The internet and social media is ever-evolving and just like domains, it’s never going away. Have a great social media idea? Now is the time to step up and take action, you may have the next great business changing idea.