STUDY: Is Your Company Using Social Media Yet?

If your company hasn’t adopted social media as a marketing tool, you’re not alone.  According to a recent study by InSites Consulting, only 16% of senior marketers in the U.S. say that social media is fully integrated into their companies.

Professor Steven Van Belleghem surveyed 400 senior marketers in the U.S. and the U.K. to measure the level of social media integration and to determine its effects.    “… many companies have started social media in a tactical way… on a popular network, without it being part of a total strategy,” he said.

Of the U.S. marketers that participated in the survey, 68% said their company had a Facebook page, 56% had a Twitter account and 47% had a LinkedIn page.  The chart below illustrates where these companies are at in terms of using information and tools from these sites on a regular basis.



The study revealed that 23% of the companies are starting to test the waters, while 27% are in the process of fully integrating social media into their daily operations.  Twenty percent were still in the testing phase, while 14% weren’t using social media at all.  Only 16% of companies had fully integrated social media into their entire organizations.

The most common reason for this trend, according to 48% of the respondents, was that the companies didn’t see the financial benefits.  Other reasons included a lack of support from top management (39%)  and the feeling that social media just wasn’t suited to the company’s products and services (42%).

Of the companies that were in the process of integrating social media, 69% of U.S. respondents said that their company was making it a part of their existing marketing plans.  It also appears that new roles were created in response to social media integration – 64% of respondents said that their company had a dedicated social media person or team.

And the employees seem to be up for the challenge – 69% of U.S. marketers agreed that their employees were open to new technologies, including social media.  Some of them must have been caught checking their Facebook pages for reasons other than work, because 57% of U.S. marketers said that although their companies didn’t have a specific social media policy, they still used a code of conduct.