NEW YORK: Seventy-nine percent of Fortune Global 100 companies are using at least one of four popular social media platforms, with Twitter leading Facebook, YouTube, and corporate blogs.
The study from Burson-Marsteller, called The Global Social Media Check-up, found that 65% of Fortune Global 100 companies had active accounts on Twitter. That was followed by 54% with a Facebook fan page, 50% a YouTube channel, and 33% a corporate blog.
However, only 20% of international companies were utilizing all four platforms to engage with stakeholders. “I was surprised that number was so low, because the reality is stakeholders are participating in all these different social forums,” said Erin Byrne, Burson's chief digital strategist. “If these companies are only in one or two, they're only reaching audiences in those areas. A company should pick the right social media tool for their objectives, but they really should be in all the places where their stakeholders are spending time.”
Fortune Global 100 companies have on average 4.2 Twitter accounts, 2.1 Facebook fan pages, 1.6 YouTube channels, and 4.2 corporate blogs.
She said Twitter leads the pack, in part “because it is the easiest to do. You don't have to shoot a video, and coming up with a 140 characters is a lot easier than coming up with a 140 words for a blog post.” Some companies using Twitter were also taking advantage of its interactivity, with 38% of them responding to people's tweets and 32% retweeting or reposting user comments within the last week of data collection.
Companies also proved regular users of their social media platforms. On average, companies with active accounts made 27 tweets and 3.6 Facebook posts per week, and 10 new YouTube videos and seven blog posts per month.
The numbers also suggest that companies are seeing success with the platforms. The Twitter accounts, for instance, averaged 1,489 followers, while each Facebook fan page averaged 40,884 fans. Corporate YouTube channels averaged 452 subscribers each, and over 38,000 views per channel. “People are more willing to engage with companies today, so those that do participate are being rewarded with followers, retweets and so on,” Byrne told PRWeek. “That is a very positive outcome.”
The study also found geographical preferences. Companies in the U.S. and Europe were more likely to use Twitter (72% and 71%) and Facebook (69% and 52%) than corporate blogs (34% and 25%, respectively). Conversely, companies in Asia-Pacific were more likely to utilize corporate blogs (50%) than Twitter and Facebook (40%).