Businesses Aren’t Using Social Media Right

February 2, 2016

According to the 2016 State of Small Business Report, companies aren’t adopting the right marketing efforts for outreach on social media. 

One in five of 1,000 small businesses recently surveyed say they don’t use social media at all. But for those who do, 45 percent use it to promote specific products or services; 38 percent say they use it to share information about promotions, sales, and discounts; and 38 percent use it to gain likes and fans, the report shows.

But social media works best not for promoting products – like your latest listing – but for relationship-building, writes Brian Sutter, a contributor to

“People are being sold on social as a place to generate leads, but it’s really a place to build loyalty, answer customer service questions and to build a community,” Ted Rubin, a social media strategist, told Forbes.

To just go after likes or fans, Sutter says could be a bad move too. Less than 3 percent of your fans or followers will likely ever see your business’s post in their news feed due to changing algorithms.

Instead, he says it’s better to collect e-mail addresses rather than likes or fans. E-mail marketing allows you to communicate directly with all of your audience and not just a few on social media.

Also, Sutter emphasizes the importance of using your website as a great marketing tool. Yet, only 25 percent of small businesses use Search Engine Optimization to increase their visibility on the search engines.  Also make sure pertinent information is high on your site. Consumers who visit your site are likely looking for more information about the services you offer; your company’s location, phone numbers, and e-mail address; how to contact you; videos; and your social media links.

Source: “Survey: When Good content Marketing Tools Go Bad,” (Jan. 28, 2016)