Businesses Anticipate Significant Increase in Social Media Investments as it Becomes Essential for Long-Term Success
CHICAGO, April 06, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Social Media sits at the center of people's daily lives and businesses are increasingly reliant on social data to inform strategic decision making across an organization. In fact, according to new research commissioned by Sprout Social (Nasdaq: SPT)—an industry-leading provider of cloud-based social media management software—and conducted online by The Harris Poll, 85% of business executives report that moving forward social data will be a primary source of business intelligence for their company, and nearly half (46%) expect their company’s social media marketing budget to increase by up to 100% in the next three years. These plans align with consumers’ needs—the data shows that going forward social media is the #1 preferred way to learn about brands, ahead of all other channels including email, or TV and print advertising.
The Harris Poll, on behalf of Sprout Social, surveyed more than 1,000 US consumers and 250 business executives to understand how people and businesses use social media today, and how they plan to use it in the future. The report, “The State of Social Media: After a Year of Transformation, Executives Are All-In on Social,” reveals the importance of social media as a business strategy, its role as a cornerstone of customer experience and the challenges facing brands in achieving success.
The report found that today’s consumers expect brands to use social media intelligence to provide a robust, curated experience. And while most executives are aligned on the importance of social media for their business, they are not confident in their company’s ability to meet the needs of their customers on this mission critical channel. Fewer than half of executives describe their current social media strategy as ‘very effective,’ while 90% of executives agree their companies need to more effectively use social data to understand their customers.
“Our research shows that US companies today rely more on social media than any other communications channel for virtually all critical business activities,” said Anna Ginovker, Director and Senior Consultant, The Harris Poll. “Whether for sales or lead generation, engaging with customers, building brand awareness or for gaining customer insights, nearly all executives (95%) agree companies will more heavily rely on social data to identify business opportunities outside of marketing. A majority of executives (59%) also anticipate their use of social media to increase over the next three years indicating this channel is certainly here to stay—as much for businesses as it is for consumers.”
“There is no doubt this past year served as a catalyst for the digital transformation happening across businesses, but what I find most compelling from the report findings is that this transformation s disproportionately unfolding on social media,” said Ryan Barretto, President of Sprout Social. “Consumers are clear—social media is where the customer experience should start, develop and end. Compared to a year ago, consumers have increasingly used social media to discover new brands (43%), recommend brands to their friends and family (33%) and make a purchase (36%). These numbers become even more pronounced for younger generations. For businesses to thrive in this world, it is clear that social insight on key touchpoints across the customer lifecycle cannot be a long-term plan, it must happen now.”
Additional key findings from the report include:
For more on how businesses and consumers use, and plan to use, social media, download the full data report here.
About Sprout Social
About The Harris Poll
About the report
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