Umass Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research Blog

2012 Fortune 500’s Social Media Adoption Surges According to 5th Annual Benchmarking Study

Twitter is the tool of choice with 73% having corporate twitter accounts and at least one company from every one of the 71 industries on the list tweeting.

The adoptions of blogs, Twitter and Facebook have all increased and YouTube users now rival Facebook users (62% vs. 66%) among the 2012 Fortune 500. These are among the key findings of the latest benchmarking study conducted by Dr. Nora Ganim Barnes, Ph.D., Director of the Center for Marketing Research at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. The study was co-authored by Ava M. Lescault MBA and Associate Director of the Center for Marketing Research and Justina Andonian, MBA candidate, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

The new report is the outcome of a statistically valid study of the 2012 Fortune 500 list. The study examined these institutions to quantify their adoption of social media tools and technologies. This is the fifth year that Barnes has tracked social media usage by this sector, and it is the only statistically valid longitudinal study of its kind with every company in the Fortune 500 included.
The research shows that:
•28% (139) of the primary Fortune 500 corporations have an external corporate blog. This is an increase of 5% from 2011.

•54% of the corporate blogs come from companies ranked in the top 200 on the list. Rank influences blogging more than it does the use of any other tool studied.

•73% (365) of Fortune 500 primary companies have corporate Twitter accounts. This is an increase of 11% from 2011.

•66% (332) of the 2012 Fortune 500 primary companies have a corporate Facebook page. This is an increase of 8% from 2011.

•62% (309) of the 2012 Fortune 500 primary companies are using YouTube. Two percent (11) are using Pinterest.

•23% (115) of the 2012 Fortune 500 primary companies have neither a Twitter account nor a Facebook page. In 2011, 31% had neither.

“The surge in use of every tool studied is exciting. These corporate giants are designing a social media presence in a deliberate and steady way,” stated Barnes.

“This clearly demonstrates the growing importance of social media in the business world,” Barnes continued. “These large and leading companies drive the American economy and to a large extent the world economy. Their willingness to interact more transparently via interactive technologies with their stakeholders is a clear shift. It will be interesting to watch as they expand their adoption of social media tools and connect with their constituents in dramatically new ways.”

A full copy of the new research report as well as an info graphic version can be downloaded at:

http://www.umassd.edu/cmr/studiesresearch/

Barnes can be reached at nbarnes@umassd.edu.

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Filed under: Happenings at the Center

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