Small companies could be losing sales and damaging their reputation by bombarding potential customers with their relentless use of social media, according to a business networking organisation.
Three quarters of business owners said they have been “put off” using companies that have “misused” sites such as Twitter and Facebook to sell their wares, a survey of 1,000 companies by Business Network International found.
Charlie Lawson, BNI’s National Director, said: “Small companies are still far from understanding how the medium works best. There are businesses which have the various social media profiles and accounts, yet no content, others that bombard with promotional messages, and a large proportion that don’t engage at all. These three strands are a combination of why SMEs are failing in their social media usage.”
He continued: “Companies are losing sales because of the lack of knowledge of social media and the right narrative they require to be effective. Common errors included using social media sites as an extension of mailing lists; failing to monitor staff members who then misuse company social media accounts; and simply giving up too soon. If there isn’t an immediate sales opportunity they quickly lose interest and cut off their possible referral opportunities.”
However, 60% of respondents said they had found sites like Twitter useful for building relationships which eventually resulted in new business.