A new study from the Alternative Board looks at the challenges faced by small businesses on social media. Over half of small businesses in the US have a Facebook page and the challenge for small businesses is not social presence but how to connect to consumers through social media. The Alternative Board study found that 64% of small businesses monitor their social media business accounts one time per week. According to our Local Commerce Monitor™ (LCM) survey of small businesses, 21.4% of small businesses spend no time for business purposes like marketing or advertising on social media. Of those who spend time for business purposes on social media the average weekly time spent is 5 to 10 hours.
So what are small businesses doing on social media?
The Alternative Board study found that 3 in 4 small businesses* reported spending the most of their social media time with content creation. When asked to identify the most important aspect of their social content creation, 77% of small businesses chose relevance over originality, conciseness, or exclusivity. The study also found that the biggest content creation obstacle for small businesses is posting content with the right message (66%). Only 21% feel posting content at the right time is a challenge. Another major challenge for small businesses on social media is measuring results. According to our Local Commerce Monitor™ small business study, 37% of small businesses do not measure the performance of their advertising and only 14% use vendor provided data (likes, clicks, shares, etc.). The Alternative Board found similar gaps in social media measurement by small businesses with 43% not measuring social media performance and only 6% tracking likes, shares etc.
*The Alternative Board panel is mostly B2B small businesses.