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BIA Kelsey Says Three-Quarters of Small Businesses Tap Into Social Media to Advertise Their Brands, KnowledgeHot of the press research reveals that social media is the dominant marketing channel for small business. And it’s the second consecutive year that this has been true.

“Social media is the top marketing channel used by small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), according to BIA/Kelsey’s Local Commerce Monitor, Wave 19 (LCM19),” the researchers explain. “Among 1,000 SMBs surveyed, 73.2 percent say they use social media to promote their businesses.”

Now that social media is a big factor for businesses of all sizes, the LCM includes usage measurements for 12 different social media platforms, including three within Facebook and two within Twitter.

While Facebook pages still dominate as the most popular social site used by SMBs, new entrants like Pinterest and Instagram have each logged significant gains in adoption by SMBs in recent months.

“SMBs are becoming more sophisticated in how they integrate social into their marketing mix,” said Steve Marshall, director of research for BIA/Kelsey. “The question is no longer ‘should I be doing more social media?’ It has now become, ‘how does social media work together with my other media and my business model?”

Among survey respondents, 57.4 percent use a Facebook page to promote their business (up from 53 percent in 2014); 20.9 percent use Twitter (regular tweets or re-tweets – up from 18.3 percent in 2014); 13.8 percent use Pinterest (up from 10.1 percent in 2014); and 11.5 percent use Instagram (up from 8.1 percent in 2014).

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