Greg Sterling mentions that social media presence among small businesses is up to 24%. Before you say “Wow, that’s impressive!” let’s define the difference between presence and marketing. According to Sterling, small businesses in the category of small business presence are using Twitter as a service channel, Tweeting about their area of expertise, maintaining a blog, monitoring feedback about their business, building a network through social networking sites like LinkedIn, posting status updates or articles on social sites, and/or maintaining a page on a social media site.
That sounds like social media marketing to me, but Sterling says only 19% of SMBs are engaged in social media marketing, which requires a higher commitment level.
This brings up the question, do you have a social media presence or are you involved in social media marketing? Do you know the difference? In my mind, the difference is that a small business with a social media presence may have social media profiles but no one is really active in using them. Social media marketing implies that you are engaged with your audience on at least one social media site.
While 24% is nothing to sneeze at – we’ve made a lot of strides in the last couple of years – there’s still a long way to go.