Not recognising social media potential puts British businesses at risk

British businesses could be putting themselves at an unfair disadvantage by failing to acknowledge the potential of social media – a mistake not made in the USA.


According to a survey by Scredible which spoke to 1,000 professionals, most Brits view social media as an entertainment tool rather than a platform with strong business potential.


A staggering 68% of those questioned felt the primary function of social media was to stay in contact with friends and family members while almost two fifths (38%) described it as a “distraction”.


Nearly half of British businesses (57%) think social media contains too much “useless” content while more than one quarter (26%) say it has too much spam but other countries see a different side to the popular websites.


American businesses viewed social media far more favourably than Brits with 54% acknowledging that these platforms could be important for their careers and business growth over the next five years.


When Brits were asked the same question, just 39% mimicked America’s answers to leave our businesses flagging behind when it comes to social media appreciation.


Why is social media important to business?


Colin Lucas-Mudd, Scredible’s Chief Executive Officer, explained that while the UK is seen as a leader in many fields it needs to embrace social media trends more ardently if it is to stay ahead.


“As social media rapidly moves into the #1 slot, both as a marketing and support tool, this is a disaster in the making in terms of global competitiveness,” he said.


“As it becomes more important than ever for professionals to fully understand ‘social’ as a learning and development tool, educational opportunities are being lost and career prospects dimmed.”


Mr Lucas-Mudd went on to say that the UK’s reputation as a “world leader in the creative arts” would be put under threat by the “negative perceptions of social media demonstrated by this study”.


He said that the businesses and individuals which are “quickest to recognise the benefits of an active social profile will get ahead of the competition” – something Brits should take note of as 29% of respondents said they didn’t have time to post on social media during the work day.


By adopting a modern marketing strategy that utilises all available tool and resources, including social media, Britain’s businesses could help protect their future and guarantee future profit amidst increasing global competition.


Those without a strong social media presence could ultimately fall behind in the business rat-race; potentially causing further financial issues and even prompting a need for business rescue or other insolvency measures.


By Phil Smith


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