Recently Telecom and The Herald teamed up to survey New Zealand's small business community. New Zealand's 460,000 small businesses have less than 20 employees and make up 97% of all the businesses in NZ.
This 2011 Small Business Survey was completed by 5,000 people.
The questions that most interest me are around awareness and use of social media.
A portion of the 20% who dont see the could be enlightened. About 25% of New Zealand businesses see potential in using social media within their business but haven't started yet.
Over 50% of New Zealand's small business community are in some way using social media.
My concern with these stats is that while over 50% say they are using social media only 16% indicated they are using these tools everyday. As we have seen from many reports consistency is one critical factor in growing an engaged audience so those businesses not using these tools everyday are jeopardising the effectiveness of their content and investment.
I'd expect that most of this use of Social Media falls into the LinkedIn box. But given only 35% of New Zealand businesses have a website I wonder what their social media sites link to...each other?
Overall more than 70% of New Zealand's Small Business Community are or want to start using Social Media
Over 50% of respondents indicated that they seek a professional's advice, maybe times are changing but I've heard many many people comment that NZ businesses were notoriously bad for not seeking professional help.
About 60% of people working in or running small businesses ask friends and professional networks for advice
What's most interesting for me is that almost 55% said they read blogs, whitepapers or websites when they need business advice. If you don't have a business blog, especially if you're in a B2B market then hopefully this provides you with suitable motivation.
More evidence that written content is critical for sharing knowledge and lead gen. If you want people reading, sharing and discussing topics on or around your business start writing and publishing!
If you would like to start engaging with or listening to some of New Zealand's businesses on Twitter please follow my #NZBIZ Twitter lists
If your Business in New Zealand is not on this list, just tweet me @justinflitter and I'll add you.