A recent (March 09) research report by Michael A. Stelzner on How Marketers Are Using Social Media to Grow Their Businesses, based on input from 900 marketers.

Top line insights/findings

  • Top three questions marketers want answered: (1) What are the best tactics to use, (2) how to do I measure the effectiveness of social media and (3) where do I start?
  • Marketers are mostly new to social media: A significant 88% of marketers surveyed are using social media to market their businesses, BUT 72% have only been doing so for a few months or less.
  • How much time does this take? A significant 64% of marketers are using social media for 5 hours or more each week and 39% for 10 or more hours weekly.
  • The top benefit of social media marketing: The number-one advantage is generating exposure for the business, indicated 81% of all marketers, followed by increasing traffic and building new business partnerships.
  • The top social media tools: Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn and Facebook were the top four social media tools used by marketers, in that order.
  • Social media tools marketers most want to learn about: Social bookmarking sites were ranked of highest interest, followed closely by Twitter.

Archived report can be downloaded here.