NZ businesses lagging in social media uptake

NZ businesses lagging in social media uptake

New Zealand behind global average in corporate use of social media according to Grant Thornton study.

Businesses in New Zealand are lagging behind the uptake of social media, according to the findings of Grant Thornton’s International Business Report (IBR). The IBR takes its information from interviews conducted in August and September of this year, with 2721 businesses from across the globe.

The report found that only 38 percent of New Zealand businesses surveyed use social media in any capacity, compared to the global average of 43 percent.

It found that we trail behind Australia and the US, where 44.9 percent and 46 percent of businesses use social media respectively.

It also found that while we are ahead of the United Kingdom where 32.2 percent of businesses use social media, we are well behind countries in Latin America with 52.7 percent, and BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) with 50 percent.

“The IBR results are fascinating to note,” says Greg Thompson, a partner at Grant Thornton New Zealand.

“They show businesses in emerging markets embracing social media much faster than their peers in mature markets. They appear to have much more faith in the impact that an active social media presence can have on their relationships with clients, with customers, and ultimately on their bottom line.”

Thompson points to a recent study by Cisco Systems on the importance of embracing social media to complement their e-commerce strategies.

“Cisco Systems’s Economics and Research Practice estimated that global e-commerce, including travel and auto purchases as well as online retail sales, will increase 13.5 percent annually for the next four years and reach an estimated US$1.4 trillion in 2015,” says Thompson.

Of the New Zealand businesses surveyed, 30 percent say advertising is their key reason to use social media, 24 percent to communicate with customers, 20 percent for recruiment, 12 percent for staff communications, and 6 percent for supplier relationships.

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