Citibank Report on Social Networking Use by SMEs in USA

Social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are being used by individuals for personal use. However, it was found that social networking websites and services are also being used by few small business owners and mangers. Little reason was found to hop the use of social networking sites by some small businesses according to a study conducted by Citibank and GfK Roper.

The study provided the data of August 2009 from 500 small businesses having less than 100 employees. It revealed that 76 percent of the firms found little help by the use of social networking sites including Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn in finding new business leads. About 86 percent of them were found to use no sites for looking for business information and advice.

It was reported that tools other than social networking were being used by small firms for promoting the growth of the business. It was found that the own website was used for generating sales by 42 percent of companies having less than 20 employees. The same thing was found with 57 percent of the firms having employees between 20 and 99.

22 percent of the firms surveyed were found to use tools such as e-mail marketing for promoting the business growth and sales. The study revealed that online advertising was used by 25 percent of the surveyed firms.

However, according to a survey by Marketing Profs, Twitter was found to be the important site used for business by about 66 percent of the 213 surveyed small businesses. It was found that 41 percent of them revealed a great value to the company by Twitter, ranking it ahead of LinkedIn and Facebook.