Last week, a survey of 8,000 small businesses about the adoption of various marketing products showed that more are using Facebook than Google for promotions.
The statistic for some reason went overlooked, as the Financial Times appeared more interested in the fact that Facebook places had received far more interest from businesses than Foursquare or Gowalla. While the data regarding location-based services was interesting, we were somewhat surprised to see that the social network had already over taken Google, the leader in online advertising.
While the gap between the two competitors was not as significant as the one between Facebook places and other location services, it’s still a telling sign of how significant the social network has become. It also should serve as a relatively good indicator of where Facebook’s advertising growth will come from: small businesses. Despite Foursquare’s distant position relative to Facebook places, it was interesting to see that more small businesses were interested in using the product than Groupon.
With many technology companies targeting small businesses as a source for growth, its a challenging market because the average expenditure of each small business is relatively small. The Financial Times reports on the figures: “72 per cent [spend] less than $5,000 a year and those spending less than $1,000 accounting for 34 percentage points of that.” It will be interesting to see how these dollars shift around over the coming years as small businesses begin to adopt emerging technologies to promote their products and services.