Report: Small businesses plan to double-down on Facebook

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Facebook’s fortunes seem likely only to get brighter, despite its recent

That’s because there are few alternatives for small-business owners looking
to get their products and services in front of the platform’s immense user
A recent survey from The Manifest
shows that most business owners plan to expand their Facebook spending.


Overall investment in social media is projected to increase, the survey
finds. Ninety-two percent of businesses plan to expand their social media
portfolio, with 58 percent increasing Facebook spending.

Although the data scandal that has rocked Facebook has given pause to some
marketers, there are few alternatives for communicators eager to use the
power of social media.

The Manifest shared:

“Facebook’s usership may dip slightly because individuals will choose not
to use the platform after news of the Facebook Cambridge Analytica
situation, but the platform still remains a key player in building
relationships with customers,” said Charlotte Chipperfield, CEO of social
media agency Chipperfield Media.

Small businesses still see the importance of Facebook in connecting with

For example, Heartland Funding Inc.,
a cash buyer for residential real estate in Illinois, plans to increase its
investment in Facebook this year.

“Even with Facebook’s recent problems in the media, we are not backing off,
but we are ramping up our exposure with Facebook,” Heartland Funding
President Don Wede said.

[RELATED: Join us at Amazon HQ for the Social Media & Digital Communications Conference.]

Which social media metrics matter?

What do small businesses hope to get from their increased spending? In a
word, engagement. Other important metrics for respondents were audience
growth (19 percent), clicks (16 percent) and conversions (15 percent).

Businesses are willing to pay to make a social media splash, too. Forty-six
percent of small businesses said they spent money on social media

The survey reported:

“Social media advertising has become more common place,” said Darren
Cabral, CEO of social media marketing agency Suits Social. “Social media is a
pay-to-play game now. Fewer businesses are putting out door hangers and
flyers. That money is going to go somewhere, and … they use it for social

Businesses shouldn’t abandon their organic social media efforts,
as there are many benefits of investing in organic reach. However, paying for social media is a growing part of the
interconnectedness of paid and unpaid marketing efforts,
embodied by the PESO model.

Marketers and brand managers should be prepared to spend a little to get
the social media wins necessary to propel today’s organizations.

Who handles your social media campaigns?

For social media marketing, most small companies rely on in-house staff.

However, The Manifest reports outside resources can be boon for many
smaller companies.

It reported:

“I generally advise that businesses use an outside resource for strategy,
especially small businesses,” said Jeff Gibbard, chief social strategist at
digital agency I’m From the Future. “The
average small business simply does not have the time to keep up with the
speed and complexity of social media and advertising changes while also
running its business. An outside strategist can provide the right
direction, ultimately saving the business time and money.”

Social media can help small businesses punch above their weight. To that
point, size seems to dictate just how much an organization invests in
online platforms.

By spending time to increase your social media presence, and/or hiring an
outside agency to juice your social media messaging, your organization can
compete with larger, more sophisticated outfits without wrecking your
marketing budget.

The study concludes:

Social media is a part of consumers’ everyday lives, and companies are
hard-pressed to find consumers who aren’t affected by social media in some

Ninety-two percent (92%) of small businesses plan to invest more in social
media because it is a way to successfully reach consumers and spread brand

Read the full study
to learn how your social media efforts stack up against the competition.

How are you planning to invest in Facebook and other social media channels, PR Daily readers?

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