Social media has made it onto the radar screen of many leading executives. But understanding the power of social media and using resources to improve marketing through this format is a ways off for most executives. Research shows a distinct gap between what business leaders say about social media and their efforts to make this form of marketing a priority.
eMarketer analysts believe that about 80% of medium and large businesses are using social media for marketing purposes. And business leaders of all sizes acknowledge that having a social media strategy is very important to future success:
- Small businesses 30%
- Medium businesses 51%
- Large businesses 34%
But when executives are questioned about whether this media format is a priority, different numbers surface. Only 27% of all business managers with significant input regarding social media strategy are making it a priority. Similarly, 42% of business managers say that their social strategies are barely keeping up while 33% are falling behind.
The rapidly changing marketplace is likely one reason that marketing managers have a hard time staying on top of social strategies and implementing a solid plan. However, eMarketer analysts warn “that those who choose not to focus on a social strategy risk falling behind the curve in integrating social media with their overall marketing goals.”
That may well be the case. Numerous other studies have pointed out that business executives are still having trouble connecting social media effort to a key marketing goal – customer acquisition. Once the metrics applied to the social media channel can demonstrate the correlation between investment costs and returns, businesses may be more likely to make their social media plan a higher priority.[Source: Executives Fail to Focus on Social Media Marketing Strategy. Emarketer.com. 20 Jul. 2011. Web. 4 Aug. 2011]