SMBs are increasing their time and marketing budget for social media

By November 07, 2012
keyboard with "blog" key

Small business proprietors have mixed feelings about the social media time investment. But they are posting on Facebook and other sites, and increasing the budget to continue to create social content.


Small businesses are investing more time into managing social media, but they are finding the shift troubling in various ways. While 66 percent of SMBs are spending more time on these sites, as a survey from Vertical Response found, 43 percent spend 6 hours or more on business-related activities such as sharing content and blogging. Smaller percentages of these businesses spend even more time on social media - 25 percent spend 6 to 10 hours per week, and 18 percent spend 11 or more hours per week. Among top-level respondents, about one-third would rather spend less time on this strategy. According to survey analysts, this suggests that SMB proprietors would prefer to focus on other business-building activities.

Time and strategy is focused on posting content on popular social networks

With this investment growth, small businesses are focusing on social networks according to their popularity. Since Facebook usage is most ubiquitous, 90 percent of SMBs are active on that network, followed by 70 percent who are on Twitter, and 50 percent on LinkedIn. A smaller, yet still sizeable amount of respondents have a presence on Google+ (32 percent) and Pinterest (29 percent). They maintain a presence by posting content regularly - at least daily, they post on Facebook (32 percent) and Twitter (29 percent).

Though time-consuming, posting and blogging is worth increasing the budget for SMBs

Balancing time spent and ROI is a significant challenge for SMBs. Many have a blog (55 percent), and publish at least weekly (43 percent). But respondents consider creating content the most time consuming of surveyed activities - 45 percent spend between 1 and 3 hours to create a blog post, and 16 percent spend over 3 hours. Even so, they recognize the value, as shown by the rise in social media budgets and the adoption of publishing tools. In fact, 22 percent increased their social media budget and 6 percent decreased it. But compared to general marketing budgets, this is a strong performance - 29 percent increased the overall budget while 17 percent decreased it. 

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