A new report from collaboration solutions provider Socialcast found more businesses are subscribing to the notion that social media is becoming an essential part of marketing and can be a cost-effective way to build brand loyalty.
According to the report, which cited figures from a study from the Center for Marketing Research at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, the large majority of Fortune 500 companies are now using several forms of social media, including Facebook and Twitter, to engage customers and create a platform for brand discussion.
Additionally, many businesses have launched blogs as a means of generating news content and driving viewership on their websites. The source noted that WordPress blogs, for example, attract more than 289 million readers each month. Plus, as Brafton has previously reported, businesses say blog marketing is a top method of generating new customers.
Among the benefits of social media marketing cited by Socialcast are easy deployment, affordability and the opportunity to engage in real-time dialogue with consumers. Additionally, the study found consumers are spending more time engaging in social media. Last year, the report stated, 22 percent of time online was spent on social media sites.
Social media is not only an effective tool for Fortune 500 companies, however. Businesses of all sizes have found the technology has the potential to even the playing field. As Brafton reported, a recent study from Roost found 71.4 percent of small- and medium-sized business owners see social media as the most effective marketing channel available to them.