Is being social really worth it for small businesses?

Now this is a question that doesn’t get asked nearly as often as it should be. With social going mainstream, everyone and everything is rushing towards building and maintaining a social presence.

But it does beg the query, is social really worth it for small businesses.

Or more specifically, when does spending time to maintain and promote Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube accounts bring in results relative to the efforts — in other words, do small businesses actually get something back from social?

It might seem startling, but there is no shortage of companies that only get less than 1% of their traffic from social media as a whole. Some might even get 0.01% overall.

Sure, it might be down more to the fact that they some businesses don’t do much socially. They aren’t involved nearly as much. But others really can’t gain much by advertising or promoting via this medium.

There are benefits to going the social routes, yes, including better visibility in search engine result pages.

But the point is, that small businesses (or very small businesses) should put more focus on knowing their existing audience and where it is coming from, instead of hopping on the social bandwagon.

Just doing something because everyone else is doing it, is not always the right way to behave!

If you are a small business owner, there will definitely come a time to put more emphasis on your social channels (which you should register for), and the best thing is you will know when that time is upon you.

You will know it for sure.

Leave a Comment Below

  • Hmm. I think there’s two sides to this. For some businesses, yes. I think local retail or coffee businesses for instance, can benefit from offering promotions through social channels. On the other hand, there are other types of small businesses that may be wasting their time on social media.

    • Great point. I know plenty of small businesses that have created buzz through social media. For instance, a local frozen yogurt started and gained tons of awareness through facebook and twitter marketing and promotions.

  • Interesting. It’s true that it’s extremely difficult for small businesses and local companies to get customers through social media. I think most of that business comes from people driving by it, radio/tv spots, and word of mouth. Maybe that’ll change in the future, but as of right now, I think you’re right Bradley!

  • It’s funny. For small businesses specifically, it seems like they’ve embraced social media even more than larger companies, but as you correctly pointed out, they see way less results than bigger companies. Things are flipped flopped right now.

    • Couldn’t agree more. It’s a catch22. Big businesses don’t need social media, but it’s effective, so they’re finally starting to use it. Small businesses want social media to work, but it’s often ineffective. I hope that changes as technology continues its exponential growth.

  • It’s a compelling argument, Bradley. I think you make some interesting points, but I do think the future is social and it will be worth it even for local businesses.

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