Clutch has released a new survey and infographic about the social media practices of small businesses, and the results are very surprising. The survey also explores how the social media habits of small businesses changed over 2014. Perhaps the most surprising finding of their survey of more than 350 small business owners was that only around 53% of small businesses are actively using social media. This contradicts some older surveys. Also surprising is the fact that 25% of businesses stated that they were unlikely to adopt social media as a marketing tool in the future.
I found the 53% statistic surprising, simply because it seems counterintuitive that a small business would pass up the opportunity to use what is essentially a free tool to market themselves. But, if you consider the needs of individual businesses, it might not be that surprising. A small business in a small town may not be in need of a social media presence or campaign if everyone around already knows about it. Or a business might be in a niche where their typical customers either don't use social media themselves, or wouldn't need social media to learn more about the business. Some owners may simply dislike social media.
Which brings to mind the fact that while we who frequent sites like Social Media Today may be living in a connected and networked world, there are a lot of people who aren't, and don't particularly want to be.
The full survey is explored in great detail on the Clutch site, and is well worth checking out, as they drill down deeply into the data and interview social media experts for their opinions on the results. Be sure to give it a look!