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Small Business adoption of #SocBiz – Advice for Small Businesses and Social! #ibmsocialbiz #ibm #smb

November 27, 2012

Yesterday we showcased a small business using social in the restaurant business.  This use of social in SMB is growing.

According to Laurie McCabe (http://twitter.com/lauriemccabe,) SMB adoption of social media did indeed jump, from 44% to 53% among small businesses (and from 52% to 63% among medium businesses from 2011 to 2012, based on trending analysis in our SMB Social Business Studies. The divide between social media haves and have-nots is also growing: our research reveals that 65% of SMBs that use social business tools anticipate revenue gains, while only 17% of “non-social” SMBs expect revenues to increase.

Cloud, social and mobile trends continue to reshape how channel partners must deliver value across the board. SMBs are increasingly choosing to purchase directly from software and cloud vendors in most areas. And Managed Service Providers (MSPs) have gained ground as a purchase channel over VARs in several solution areas, including security, BI and collaboration. The need for more specialized business and/or technology expertise has also made some types of channel players more relevant in each specific solution category than others.

Actions for Small  Businesses:

  • Start Social!   Social can make a small company big!  Take for instance, Richard Scott Salon and Day Spa.
    They aggressively market their services and expertise through Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Foursquare.  His comprehensive integrated marketing embeds trust with every client.  He has done no print ad for 1.5 years; but has had a tremendous growth in new clients.  He will do a print ad this December with links to social tools and a QR code!
    Listen and form relationships.  Don’t market!   Social is about a relationship — not a sales transactional event.    Do what you do best!  Form relationships.   Share expertise.    I love the Dry Cleaner in NYC who has focused his twitter page on getting out stains and his POV on cleaning!
    Be Focused.     To be successful, you must keep up the content and the conversation.  Make sure you are driving the right level of content on a regular basis!

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