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Social Media Strategies in Small Businesses

Carter, JK (2014) Social Media Strategies in Small Businesses. UNSPECIFIED. NEMODE: New Economic Models in the Digital Economy.

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Abstract

An exploratory project has been carried out with a number of small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) to investigate the use of social media by SMEs. Previous research has highlighted the need for more investigations into the strategies used by businesses in implementing and using social media and in finding out how firms monitor the impact of social media on their business. The objectives of the research were: • To review the literature and existing survey data to develop a framework for understanding strategic approaches to social media use in small businesses, from the perspective of the business owner-manager; • To gain further insights through interviews into social media strategies developed by small businesses; • To examine the extent to which small businesses using social media are monitoring the impacts of social media use on their business; • To investigate the evolution of attitudes and strategic approaches to social media in the new digital economy. The project used mixed methods by first analysing secondary data on social media use in SMEs in the West Midlands, obtained in 2003. This was used to generate questions for semi-structured interviews. Six semi-structured interviews were carried out with SMEs, based in the North West of England. The interviews took place in small businesses with less than 50 staff and were taken from a range of business sectors. The interviews explored four subject areas: • Use of Social Media • Social Media Strategy • Champions of Social Media • Impacts of Social Media

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