How are Italian companies adjusting to the need to integrate social media into their marketing activities?
A broad study (Social Media Effectiveness Use Assessment) was recently conducted by the Polytechnic of Milan on a sample of 3,655 managers from 2,880 different businesses. It’s the most important study that has been carried out up to now on Italian companies or Italian branches of foreign firms having an Italian management.
The conclusions of the survey show a limited but growing openness of companies to social marketing, in the sense of brand communication and empowerment, with investments that are still scarce, although the importance of social networks for corporate policies has been acknowledged.
It must be noted that the surveyed sample were fairly well acquainted with socials: 36.4% said they had been using social media for more than 5 years, 39.1% for 3-4 years and only 6.4% for less than a year. Moreover, 51% spends an average of one hour or more a day on socials.
The geographic distribution is less satisfying: more than 31% of users come from Lombardyand 33.5% from only three other regions (Emilia Romagna, Veneto and Lazio).
Among the great amount of reported data, it’s interesting to emphasise those on the expectations. The short-term economic return appears to be less important than engagement activities, increasingly carried out through socials thatuse images and growingly less through “traditional” tools, like participating in games, downloading materials, etc.
The latter is confirmed by the fact that the sample chose YouTube as the most popular social, way more than LinkedIn, Twitter and, lagging way behind, Facebook. Nevertheless, as expected, Facebook is the most used social for personal and corporate uses, recently followedby other networks for specific or local targets, likeSlideShare, Pinterest, Google+, Flickr, Foursquare and Viadeo.