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Aug 9

2012 Trends In Social Media Marketing: The Importance of Time.

Time

Social Media Examiner has released their 2012 Social Media Industry Report with the self-proclaimed intention of identifying the “who, what, where, when, and why” of social media marketing. The data in this report is of particular interest to me because of its focus on how business interacts with social media, and not the consumer. Consequently, the information about usage trends, adoption rates, and exploration of the needs of marketers using social platforms for marketing purposes is very relevant to me as a brand manager, to MJR Creative Group as an agency, and for our customers seeking to more effectively market their products and services.

Social Media Marketing is Important

  • 94% of marketers are using social media to market their business.
  • 83% feel social media was important for their business

But how many of them are doing it with purpose and strategy? Anecdotal evidence shows that many of the respondents answering in the affirmative to this type of question have established their social presences on Twitter and/or Facebook (and to a lesser extent Google+, Pinterest, etc.), but a far smaller percentage are actually using social platforms for marketing in any meaningful and strategic fashion.

This disconnect between the very high percentage of marketers who feel social/inbound marketing is important and the percentage that are actually using it in a strategic fashion is borne out with data about actual time spent managing social efforts:

  • 34.5% spend 5 hours or less using social media.
  • 24.5% are spending more than 20 hours per week.

Time is Both a Necessity and a Concern

Time is one of biggest worries for marketers exploring social media, ranking as one of the top ten concerns about the marketing channel. However, as with most marketing efforts, time and money is what it takes to get the most out of the opportunity.

There is a direct relationship between the experience of the marketer in the social environment and the weekly time committment; more experience means more time spent on social media marketing.

  • 51% of people just beginning with social media spend 1-5 hours per week.
  • 80% with more than 6 months experience spend over 5 hours a week.

Time also yields better results

Consistent, long-term time investment is an important factor for generating exposure and sales results from social marketing efforts.

  • 58% of marketers who have been using social marketing for more than three years report those efforts have improved sales.
  • That number drops to 20% for those using it for only 6 months.
  • 95% using social for three or more years indicate it has increased exposure for their business, while 73% feel the same who have been using social for 6 months or less.
  • 78% of marketers with three years of experience gained leads from social media marketing.

Those who invest greater time also gain the most business partnerships, with B2B marketers seeing the best results.

  • Of marketers with three years or more experience with social media marketing, 72% saw new partnerships.
  • Of those with 6 months or less experience, 44% saw new partnerships.

Marketplace Insight

Marketers are increasingly realizing the benefits of monitoring their social space to gain marketplace insights.

  • 79% of B2B companies reported using social media to for business intelligence gathering.

Again, the more time spent monitoring the greater the returns.

Time = Results and More Time = More & Better Results.
If you Don’t Have the Time, Outsource

An important takeaway form this report is the tremendous benefit that is realized as your time commitment to managing your social media programs increase. This presents a tremendous challenge to business as staffing remains tight. Social platform development, customizing social monitoring and and analytics tools, content creation, and strategy and planning are all key areas where strained marketing departments  can benefit by outsourcing to a firm that has expertise in social media marketing.

- Bradley Fitzhenry, Brand Manager MJR Creative Group

Relevance Reports

MJR Creative Group periodically documents the growing influence of social media on the food, wine and agriculture industries through the release of periodic Relevance Reports.

Download Relevance Reports Fresh Summit 2013

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