A recent study from Buddy Media and Booz & Company analyzed the impact social media marketing has on brands and consumers.
The report, titled Campaigns to Capabilities: Social Media & Marketing 2011, hit on three primary points - Facebook is the preferred social network, content is king and advertising is the primary use of social media.
Facebook currently has more than 850 users, and 94 percent of respondents stated that it was one of their top three social platforms. Twitter followed with a 77 percent usage rate, with YouTube third at 42 percent. Fast company notes that large brands have come to a consensus that these three outlets are where the majority of consumers are, and where they should market their products during local internet marketing campaigns.
Furthermore, 59 percent of respondents planned to hire social media community managers in the future, and 96 percent noted that they'll be increasing their investments in social media-related capabilities. Also, 72 percent will look to add full-time creative content, meaning that social media experts and writers are in-demand.
Lastly, 96 percent of companies use social media for advertising and promotion-related activities. Emerging uses include brand awareness - 90 percent, customer insights - 81 percent and interactivity - 89 percent.