Tech companies still missing a trick with social media

 

By Debby Penton

The majority of the UK’s fastest growing technology companies are still failing to use social media channels to their full advantage by failing to engage with their audiences according to EML Wildfire’s latest benchmark of the Deloitte Fast Tech 50. While the benchmark results show that 50% of companies are now more conversational on Twitter, most of the other channels are either being neglected or used to broadcast one-way communications.

The results of the annual study, which analyses the social media activity of the 2013 Deloitte Fast Tech 50 – a list of the UK’s 50 fastest growing technology companies – are revealed in a report entitled ‘How social are you?’. It also offers over 60 social media best practice tips and is available to download from http://www.emlwildfire.com/white_papers/tech_social_media  .

Key findings

Facebook usage has plateaued – use by brands has stayed exactly the same over the last 12 months at 68%. However, only 30% of companies actually attempted to be social in their communications.

LinkedIn comes out on top again – unsurprisingly LinkedIn came out on top as businesses most popular social network with 100% of Fast 50 having a profile. 92% had even completed their profiles, and the proportion of companies with active news feeds jumped to 64% compared to 49% in 2012.

Engagement levels on Twitter double – 50% of the Fast 50 are now trying to actually engage with their audiences on Twitter by adopting a more personal, conversational approach. This is double what was a very dismal showing by tech companies in 2012 at 24%.

Google+ draws level with Facebook for adoption, but engagement rates are the lowest of all channels – Google’s user acquisition strategies are clearly starting to pay off with 68% of the Fast 50 having Google+ pages or profiles. However, only 42% of those are posting on a fairly regular basis, with only one company making any attempt to engage with its audience.

Analysis

No other news network has the reach of social media to connect with potential customers all over the world. But as quick as companies are applying the foundations of social media to their organisations, customer expectations are shifting even quicker. Not every social channel is relevant for every company, but if you’ve set the page up and are encouraging people to like or follow you, then customers will be expecting some level of engagement and conversation. And the danger of not doing so can be that a competitor does a better job of nurturing a relationship with your prospect or customer to the detriment of your business.

The full results of the research can be downloaded from http://www.emlwildfire.com/white_papers/tech_social_media

Methodology

To get a clear picture of how technology companies were using social media, EML Wildfire selected companies listed in the 2013 Deloitte Fast Tech 50; a list of the fastest growing technology companies in the UK. The list is a combination of small and large companies from all corners of the technology industry, united by impressive growth figures in the last year. In theory, these businesses should be leading the way in terms of marketing strategy.

Each company underwent the same analysis process. Rather than just recording whether or not these organisations were on social networks, the report took an in-depth look at what they were saying and doing through social channels, as well as how frequently they were engaging with their audience.

The companies assessed were: FreeAgent, Skyscanner, Brandwatch, HighQ, Text Local, Maxymiser, Global Personals, Lovestruck, Just Eat, Not on the High Street, Click Travel, P2i, MPB Photographic, AlertMe, 4D DC, Ayima, Infectious Media, Vegware, Simplify Digital, Intelligent Energy, Monitise Group, White, Sales-i, Supermassive Games, Sixteen South, Forbidden, Backbone Connect, Mimecast, Nostrum Group, Avecto, Peach Telecom, M2 Lasers, Mobile Account Solutions, Orca Digital, Magnetise Group, Bowman Power, BCS Global, Virtual1, The Test People, Equal Experts, Horizon Discovery, Evance Wind, Random Storm, Fiscal Technologies, Miroma, Oriium, Silixa, Comm Agility, Infracast.

About the author

Debby Penton is director at EML Wildfire.

EML Wildfire is an independent UK-based B2B and consumer technology PR agency with a track record of campaigns across the UK, Europe, the USA and Asia. Our expertise covers the enterprise, communications, electronics, design services, cleantech, digital and semiconductor technology sectors.

We combine traditional media relations with social media skills and marketing expertise, offering results-driven, measurable PR programmes that build market authority, engage target audiences and create sales opportunities across multiple channels.

We are headquartered in South West London on the banks of the River Thames with a presence in Cambridge, the UK’s technology heartland.

Follow EML Wildfire for the latest social media news and advice on Twitter – @EMLWildfire – or on the EML Wildfire Tech PR Blog.

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