The following is a guest post by Gordon Plutsky , Director of Marketing and Research at King Fish Media.

No one can argue that social media isn’t ubiquitous.  But some people—particularly those who are business-minded—just can’t seem to get away from asking:  But is it relevant?  Does it really have a valid place in marketing?   And, What about ROI?   It’s time for them to pull themselves firmly into the present.  Today, rare is the marketer who is asking, Should we use social media?   Instead, the common refrain has become, How do we use social media and how do we know it’s working?

This spring, custom media company King Fish Media partnered with HubSpot and Junta42 to survey more than 450 senior management and marketing executives on their ever-evolving relationships with social media.  We wanted to know how important different social media channels are to them, how they’re using them, who’s doing the work, and how important measurable results are.   Now we’ve pulled together their responses—along with some helpful analysis from us—into a new study:  “2010 Social Media Usage, Attitudes, and Measurability:  What Do Marketers Think?”

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So, what did we find?  Well, first and foremost, the vast majority of companies are now not only using social media in some form, but also have an actual social media strategy behind their online presence. Among the other key findings of “Social Media Usage, Attitudes and Measurability: What Do Marketers Think?”:

  • 85% of survey respondents say that original content is critical to the success of their social media campaign.
  • Branded original and expert content is used more often than any other type of content.  And development of an audience for content is one of the top objectives of marketers.
  • 43% of respondents revealed that they don’t need to show positive ROI to get social media funding from their organization.
  • Nearly three quarters of all companies (72%) currently have a social media strategy, and of those that don’t, the majority (80%) will within the next year.
  • Only 9% of surveyed organizations have full-time positions dedicated to managing social media responsibilities, while 90% include those as part of someone’s overall responsibilities.
  • 85% of companies are handling their social media efforts internally.
  • Two thirds of the company’s surveyed (67%) focus their social media efforts on their company as a whole, while 41% promote individuals within the company and 24% promote a specific brand.
  • Original content, both branded and expert are by far the most used tactic for social media (73%; 72%, respectively). Video content (51%), user case studies (45%), and reviews (41%) are also used by roughly half of all respondents.

Clearly, marketers are increasingly realizing the essential role that social media—and engaging content for those media—must play in any brand campaign, but it is just as clear that marketers are still struggling to identify best practices in the cluttered and often confounding space.  All of which might explain why a majority of companies (64%) aren’t yet requiring definitive measurable ROI to justify their social media budgets.

Download the complete findings of the King Fish Media Survey on Social Media Usage, Attitudes and Measurability . Additionally you can hear a detailed explanation of these findings on a free webinar Wednesday, August 25, 2010 at 2 p.m. EST/11 a.m. PST. Join Gordon Plutsky , Director of Marketing and Research, King Fish Media and Kipp Bodnar , Inbound Marketing Manager, HubSpot, as they review the results and discuss the implications and applications for marketers.  

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Originally published Aug 11, 2010 1:30:00 PM, updated July 28 2017

Topics:

Social Media Strategy