Social Media Examiner recently released their annual social media study to learn how 2,800 marketers use social media to grow and promote their business.

I love these reports, not only because they provide insights to marketers such as myself, but because they demonstrate the power of what strong, smart data can provide.

I encourage you to read the 50-page report here, but for a taste of the good stuff, here are the key stats:

1.     92% of marketers feel social media is important for their business.

2.     89% of marketers want to know the most effective social media tactics and engagement techniques.

3.     97% of marketers are participating in social media marketing.

4.     85% feel like they don't know what social media tools are best.

5.     83% are concerned about how to target customers and prospects on social media.

6.     49% have being doing social media marketing for one to three years.

7.     83% of marketers have integrated social media into traditional marketing activities.

8.   64% of marketers are using social media six hours or more a week.

9.   19% of marketers spend more than 20 hours each week on social media.

10.  92% felt their social media efforts have generated more exposure for their businesses.

11.  80% felt increased traffic was the second major benefit of social media.

12.  72% of marketers are using social media to develop loyal fans.

13.  71% are using it to gain marketplace intelligence.

14.  74% of marketers who spend 40-plus hours on social media earn new business through their efforts.

15.  50% report social media has not helped them improve sales.

16.  95% say spending six hours per week on social media increased exposure for their businesses.

17.  61% of B2B marketers were more likely to build new partnerships with social media.

18.  50%+ marketers with more than one year of social media experience generated leads with social platforms.

19.  57% of businesses with ten or fewer employees said social media reduced marketing expenses.

20.  58% of marketers using social media for more than one year saw an increase in search rankings.

21.  77% of B2C marketers are more likely to develop a loyal fan base through social media than B2B marketers (64%).

22.  49% of B2C marketers are more likely to increase activities than B2B marketers (32%).

23.  68% of marketers plan to blog more.

24.  Only 8% say blogging is the most important social media platform.

25.  74% of B2B marketers are more likely to increase blogging compared to B2C marketers (63%).

26.  54% of marketers selected Facebook, when asked to choose one platform.

27.  34% of marketers think that their Facebook efforts are effective.

28.  50% of B2C marketers feel their Facebook efforts are working.

29.  Only 34% of B2B marketers feel their Facebook efforts are working.


30.  88% of marketers just starting out in social media choose Facebook to begin their efforts.

31.  68% of B2C marketers choose Facebook as their leading social media platform.

32.  79% of marketers with one to two years of social media marketing experience use Twitter most often.

33.  67% will increase their activities on Twitter.

34.  33% of B2B marketers choose LinkedIn as their leading social media platform.

35.  72% of social media newcomers were more likely to increase their use of LinkedIn.

36.  54% of marketers are using Google+.

37.  65% want to learn more about Google+.

38.  61% plan on increasing Google+ activities in 2014.

39.  85% have no plans to utilize Snapchat.

40.  58% of marketers feel original written content is the most important form of content.

41.  65% of B2B markers say original written content is most important.

42.  24% of B2C marketers place more importance on original visual content.

43.  81% plan to increase their use of original written content.

44.  70% plan to increase their use of infographics.

45.  68% of marketers want to learn more about creating original visual content.

46.  88% of marketers want to know how to measure their return on investment for social media activities.

47.  30% felt they could measure their social media ROI.

48.  68% of marketers analyze their social media activities.

49.  74% of marketers with five-plus years of social media marketing experience use YouTube most often.

50.  Only 6% of marketers are doing podcasts.

51.  21% plan on doing more podcasting in 2014.

52.  46% of marketers investing 40+ hours per week in social media are much more focused on Instagram.

53.  68% have no plans to utilize geo-location.

54.  67% of marketers plan on increasing their YouTube marketing.

55.  50% plan to increase their use of Pinterest.

56.  35% plan on increasing their use of short-form video services like Vine.

57.  47% had no plans to use forums.

58.  21% of marketers plan on increasing activities on social review sites like Yelp.

59.  64% have no plans to use social bookmarking like StumbleUpon.

60.  Only 12% of marketers plan on increasing their use of geo-location services like Foursquare.

61.  90% use Facebook ads, followed by LinkedIn ads (20%) and Twitter ads (17%).

62.  94% of B2C marketers are using Facebook ads more than B2B marketers (82%).

63.  74% of marketers say they are not outsourcing their social media efforts.

64.  For those that do outsource, 14% outsource design/development.

65.  85% of social media marketers also use email marketing.

Be sure to check out the full report for more details on these stats.

This post originally appeared on the RingLead Blog.

About the author

Tj4i_10D_400x400Amanda Nelson is Director of Marketing at RingLead where she leads the content marketing strategy and execution. She has spent the last three years in content marketing and community management at and Radian6, and has a background in account management for interactive and full service advertising agencies. Follow her on Twitter at @amandalnelson.


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