19 Aug 2011
In an absolutely hammer blow for technologists everywhere, research emerged today revealing that Johnny Small-Businessman is not diving in at the deep end with social media technologies. NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!
According to deeply inscrutable research from TalkTalk Business, just one per cent of UK SMBs are using platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter to try and drum up new custom.
Furthermore, Scottish businesses are seemingly completely ambivalent to this whole social networking malarkey. A meagre nine per cent of smaller firms in Edinburgh and Glasgow consider social media as an integral channel of business communication.
But among the legendarily tech-friendly businessfolk of Norwich a massive 44 per cent consider the MyFaces and the TweetBooks their most important bizness comms tool. And, in other news, the personal computing revolution has seemingly reached East Anglia, and is probably spreading like wildfire through the Norfolk broads as we speak.
Newcastle emerges as another of the UK's top techie provincial outposts. (Reader(s) from any other non-London locations who wish to be alienated in a future blog post, please get in touch at the usual address.) Some 69 per cent of SMBs in Geordieland are comfortable using social media, with Manchester (63 per cent) and London (62) coming second and third.
(To be fair, I imagine most business types in the capital are too busy making lots of money or enjoying the city's unparalleled array of cultural attractions to spend hours just sitting in front of their PC and looking at pictures of other people having fun.)
Bristol appears to be the least Facebook-friendly city, with just 39 per cent of SMBs feeling comfortable using social media platforms. Edinburgh and Nottingham (46 per cent) and Sheffield (47) also scored lowly.
TalkTalk Business managing director Paul Lawton reckons small businesses could benefit from making better use of social media technologies.
"Its business benefits range from being able to engage and understand the needs of customers and prospects, through to gaining insights into target markets and perceptipocketons of your organisation or brand," he opined.
Good points, Paul. In fact, as a little experiment, I thought I'd search Twitter for #talktalk to see what people's "perceptions of your organisation or brand" are. It appears that many people perceive your firm as one that's just been hit with a £3m fine for accidentally charging 65,000 customers for services they never received.
I think you're right - this social networking business can be a useful source of information.