For all the talk we do about how social networks are impacting business, there are not yet a lot of studies that businesses can look to for concrete evidence of the impact that involving oneself in social sites can have — especially not impact on ROI. Of course, it’s still early days for massive infiltration of advertising on social networks of the type and scale that search has proved to be such a successful business model. So when I saw eMarketer’s post concerning the results of a survey that shows significant numbers of businesses reporting that they have acquired customers through the use of social networks, I wanted to share it with our readers.
The study, undertaken by Regus (an office services firm located in 450 cities in 80 countries), surveyed a number of businesses worldwide (about 15,000), and found that just under half of smaller companies who responded to their survey reported having acquired a customer through a social network. Interestingly, fewer medium-sized companies (36%) reported doing so, and even fewer (28%) large companies.
Here’s the data broken down by country:
As eMarketer comments, this is “despite large companies being more likely to devote budgets to social marketing.”
The Regus study covers a lot more ground. Tomorrow I’ll get into some of the other trends and findings.