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Australian SMEs are failing at social media, says Telstra

|Apr 5|magazine5 min read

 

Less than a quarter of Australian small and medium-size businesses (SMEs) are taking advantage of social media marketing opportunities, new research from Telstra revealed.

A survey of 1000 SMEs found that 24 per cent of businesses utilise social media, and 12 per cent said they felt social-driven initiatives hindered their business successes.

The finances and time required to build up these profiles and followings, however, seems to be the number one reason why smaller businesses have not taken the leap into social.

"Social media is very labour intensive and is a big investment for business owners, particularly for companies with 15 employees or less," social media expert Karalee Evans told news.com.au.

"But these businesses are actually connecting to their customers and using social media on a much more personal level by adding their own personality to their brand, and is something they do well.

"Customers ultimately want a humanised brand and this is where smaller companies actually have the leg up as they're dealing with the business owner instead of the corporation."

Telstra maintains that investing the time to create a social presence is expected by consumers in today’s increasingly competitive business world.

"In a digital age where smartphones and tablets are used on a daily basis, we know customers expect a company to have a social media presence," said Will Irving, Group managing director of Telstra Business.

It seems that many businesses are listening: a separate Bibby Barometer survey conducted in February found that 78 per cent of Australia’s SMEs are looking into plans to expand their social presence.