A new study has revealed that almost eight out of ten companies (79.2 percent) use social media sites to monitor and extract information relating to their competitors.
The survey, conducted by competitive intelligence software providers Digimind, noted that some 62.5 percent of firms use Twitter to perform this very legal yet highly beneficial corporate espionage, which was second only to LinkedIn (69.4 percent), but far ahead of Facebook (47.2 percent) and Google+ (35.2 percent).
The data showed that firms also track industry developments and consumer trends using social media tools.
While almost two-thirds (60.6 percent) of respondents are currently in the process of planning social intelligence projects, one in five (21 percent) do not monitor social media channels.
“A small proportion of companies remain cautious about the potential value of social media monitoring but the vast majority see it as a complement to the full spectrum of intelligence gathering,” said Patrice Francois, Digimind’s Associate Director. “There is a tendency for some people to view social media monitoring as something which solely benefits B2C environments but it’s fast being adopted by a wide range of businesses and organisations for unearthing valuable intelligence insights.”