Businesses in the UK are lagging behind their peers in the emerging markets when it comes to adopting and using social media.
China, India and Brazil are, on average, 20 to 30 percentage points more likely to use social media than their counterparts in developed countries, according to a global KPMG report.
Despite the slower uptake in the developed world, social media is rapidly moving up the boardroom agenda in organizations around the world. The survey found that more than 70 percent of companies globally are now active on social networks and see social media as a viable and effective business tool.
Amongst the reports other key findings,80 per cent of UK managers in the survey said they use social media at least several times a week as opposed to 98 per cent in in China,and 95 per in Brazil.
48 per centof UK companies use external social media to communicate for business purposes such as connecting with suppliers, clients and customers compared to 72 per cent in the US and 83 per cent in China
The report also found that businesses in the retail sector use social media more than those in other sectors
80 per cent of respondents globally said that the use of social media tends to deliver significant returns to the business that outweigh the risks associated with social media use. The most quoted benefits include a wider knowledge pool, an increased public profile, increased job satisfaction and the opportunity to cultivate relationships.
The report also found that organizations that restrict access to social networks may be fighting a losing battle. One-third of employees at organizations with blocked access were not only using social media at the office, they were ‘jail breaking’ their work devices to satiate their social networking needs.