Email is the most effective communication channel for small businesses

Although the use of social media among companies increased, e-mail and websites remain the two most effective marketing tools for small businesses, according to a study of Constant Contact.

Small business owners surveyed cite the following digital channels as the five most effective:

  • Email: 91% use e-mail marketing. Among them, 78% say that their efforts are moderately (48%) or very (32%) effective.
  • Websites: 95% have websites, among them, 75% say they are moderately (38%) or very (37%) effective.
  • Online advertising: 69% use them, among them 60% say that their efforts are moderately (39%) or very (21%) effective.
  • Social media: 73% use at least one partner channel and among them, 54% say they are moderately (37%) or very (17%) effective
  • Blogs: 43% have a blog, among them, 47% say that their efforts are moderately (33%) or very (14%) effective.

The most effective tactic for small businesses is the telephone, used by 73% of the owners, of whom 74% say their efforts are moderately (38%) or very (36%) effective.

Almost three quarters of small business owners (73%) say that social media marketing has increased, among which we have 80% that have done it sensibly in the last twelve months. On the other hand, 81% expect to increase their efforts next year.

Facebook is the most adopted and effective channel with 95% of companies that use it, among which 82% say that their efforts are moderately (52%) or very (30%) effective.

Twitter and LinkedIn are almost the same among small businesses, with 60% using the first and 58% using the second. Among those who use Twitter, 33% say it is moderately effective and 14% say it is very effective. Among those who use LinkedIn the figures are 35% and 12% respectively.

Only 45% of business owners use video channels, but almost three-quarters say they are very effective for their businesses, while 26% cite them as very effective.

Other key findings are:

  • When the intention is to connect with someone to talk, email is more likely to be used (95%), followed by the phone with 77%, face-to-face meetings with 69%, Facebook with 50%, LinkedIn with 24% and Twitter with 20%.
  • 83% of small business owners check e-mail for the first time when they connect online, compared to 6% who control news sites and 5% who visit Facebook.
  • As for the areas in which owners need help, 61% cite marketing, occupying the first place with sales and new business, followed by business growth planning (40%), technology (24%), accounting / finance (23%), human resources (11%) and legal matters (10%).

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