eMarketer estimates that 127 million people in the US, or 57.5% of internet users, will use social networks at least monthly this year. Facebook alone has over half a billion active users worldwide. Still, many of the smallest businesses don’t believe their customers can be marketed to on such sites, according to an August 2010 survey from customer review platform RatePoint.
Respondents, the majority of whom were business owners with just one to five employees, were split on whether social media was a quick way to connect with current or future customers, but sentiment was largely negative. When asked if they thought customers wanted to hear from them on social sites, only a quarter of businesses thought they did.
In addition, 20% of small businesses did not think their customers spent time on social networking sites; another 27% were undecided. And nearly a quarter did not believe their customers did research online before doing business with their company.
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