According to a study called Social Media Reality Check, by CNW and Leger Marketing, the number of PR pros using Twitter has almost doubled from 2009 to 2011. Currently 76 per cent of communicators in the US and Canada use Twitter however only 15 per cent of major companies have a budget allocated for social media. Clearly there is a disconnect between the forward thinking PR pros and those at the helms of major companies deciding how best to communicate with their consumers.
In my PR career, I’ve often found that the PR pros that are on the ground running have a stronger grasp of social media and its use when communicating to consumers meanwhile those with the keys to the budget are too reluctant to fully understand the advantages of open dialogue via social media. Hence small businesses find a great opportunity by networking through social media to not only gain new customers but to brand themselves fluidly and easily. The means are within their hands and luckily going independent for me has been just as rewarding.