August 02, 2010
Even though an estimated 940 million people are part of some sort of online network, most small businesses haven’t embraced social media. A March poll of small-business executives by Citibank N.A. found that 81% were not using social-media sites. Only 30% said they planned to use social media to market their businesses in the next year.
Yet social-media experts say tools like Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare can be particularly beneficial for small firms because they provide a low-cost way to reach potentially large numbers of people.
“It can level the playing field and give a small business equal exposure or even more exposure than a national brand, and it’s great for lead-generation as well,” says Diane Rayfield, the head of Harp Social, an Oakbrook Terrace-based social-media marketing agency.