UK Businesses wake up to the power of social media finally
I have seen this research data coming for a long while, the UK business world slowly waking up to a new form of communication.
While it is true that the UK probably leads the World in creativity in terms of media, advertising and marketing, we probably lag a little behind in adopting certain types of communication methods such as social media. The truth is, compared to our American cousins we are much less interested in our customers feelings and thoughts than they are, and this has shown in the US adoption of social media compared to the UK (in general terms)
Good news for social media managers
The research published by Episerver has shown that out of 250 marketing decision makers, 73% of UK businesses are already running online communities or seeking to do this in the next 12 months.
This has lead to a growing need for community/social media managers as a means to effectively communicate and engage with new and old customers via specially designed and implemented pages on social networks and the web.
Knowledge is power, thankfully business is waking up to this more and more
As the old adage that knowledge is power holds true most of the time, it is a good thing to hear that UK businesses are now preparing to embrace social media and not dismiss it or wait to see what their competitors are doing before they consider engaging themselves as this may be too late!
The EpiServer report goes on to highlight that 69% of UK businesses will appoint social media managers in 2011, and 41% saying that they will be looking to hire a person to do this role in the next 12 months. 28% already have what they would term a community manager in place already.
In house marketing department utilised quite often:
With 51% of social media management currently being carried out by a marketing manager internally it does however seem that the job of social media manager is not really being given proper consideration and respect. It is doubtful that a general marketing person will have the skill-set to actively engage and implement social media tactics that can be assessed fully via analytical tools and also be as up to date with opportunities in the ever changing sphere of social media, simply updating to Facebook and Twitter every now and again is not social media management, this is tinkering, and I see huge companies on Twitter in particular who had a go and then stopped, usually as they did not implement correct methods and expected instant results and got dismayed.
Time to respect social media management services as a profession in itself?
While this report does hold some good news it is disappointing seeing companies that operate in a totally unrelated field attempt to manage their own social media campaigns, this type of work can be too rewarding for businesses to simply play around with and is therefore better provided by a dedicated team of people with experience of Internet marketing and social network advertising and online user engagement.