Right now, many small businesses are successfully using local social media marketing strategies and more are joining every day. A recent study conducted by Zoomerang found that close to half of the small businesses surveyed are already using social media marketing, with 86% of those having a Facebook page. Over 70% of small businesses that utilize social media noticed more traffic, while over 60% experienced improvements in search rankings (Social Media Marketing Industry Report 2011). Nearly half (48%) of the small businesses saw an increase in sales from using social media.
This is just the beginning! These figures are sure to increase over time due to the long-term investment required to engage an audience and build community in social media.
Local social media marketing projections
Inside the advertising and marketing industry, the statistics are compelling. Marketers are increasingly placing more importance on social media marketing: from 64% in 2009 to 90% in 2011 (Social Media Marketing Report 2011). Locally targeted advertising in social media is projected to increase at a 33% annual rate jumping from $400 million in 2010 to a whopping $2.3 billion in 2015 (BIA/Kelsey). A significant portion of this spending is from large national corporations that are increasingly moving into local social media spaces. Now is the time for small local businesses to get in the social media game before they are drowned out by bigger players.
How is big business using local social media marketing campaigns?
Large corporations are starting to employ local social media strategies to achieve business growth. A great example is REI’s (Recreational Equipment, Inc.) recent local strategy launch. REI is a cooperatively owned outdoor gear and outfitter with over 115 stores across the United States. They recently launched a local social media marketing campaign (using Facebook and Twitter) by breaking up their stores into 53 regional areas. They trained over 300 practitioners from their retail stores and are looking to grow local social media communities by searching for and connecting to parks, outdoor groups, and other relevant local influencers. Check out REI’s Jordan Williams’ presentation below.
With many other national retailers soon to follow suit, there’s no time to waste. Now is the time for local small businesses to get into social media, especially as larger companies look to compete in the same local social media spaces.
So, what big businesses have you seen playing effectively in the local social media space?