Best Report On Current Social Media Use By Small Biz – And It’s Free

Social Media ReportNo kidding folks. This is the best free report on the state-of-the-market on social media I’ve seen in a long time. And it’s free.

2010 Social Media Marketing Industry Report

The report is by founder Michael A. Stelzner and is culled from interview/survey work with about 1900 small business owners. Of course in the middle of it is a big promo for the Social Media Success Summit 2010 (kind of the point, yes?), but this is a nice, meaty report.

I love stuff like this because, frankly, I still encounter a boatload of skepticism on social media among small businesses. Here’s just a snippet of some of the great data:

  • Still new, but use is becoming the “norm“: A whopping 65% of respondents have just started using social media. 31% have been doing it “for years.”
  • Exposure, Leads Biggest Benefits: 85% said exposure of their business was the biggest benefit and more than half (52%) said it generated qualified leads.
  • Experienced Users Close Business With It: 73.8% of users who have used social media for years say it has helped them close business.
  • Main Tools Used: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Blog — with the largest percentage (a whopping 81%) planning to increase blog activity.

Hootsuite Debuts “Hootly” … But You Can Still Use “Owly”

Because I use Hootsuite for professional work, I found out this morning they’ve unveiled a new URL shortener. It’s called “hoot-ly” (URL-speak “”) and it’s an option to use instead of “owly” (or “”).

Why the switch? Hootsuite explains it all here, but to save you the time and labor of clicking it’s basically this: Use “” when you want to use Hootsuite’s “social bar” at the top of the page, and use the old “” when you want your links to appear without their “social bar”. For those who may not have seen it, anything linked via Hootsuite had a “social bar” at the top that let you forward posts, articles, whatever via Twitter, Facebook, Digg post, or several other options.

So … Is it a good thing that Hootsuite has abandoned this? An option is definitely better than not having the option. Also, this might (might) be fallout from Facebook unveiling the “Like” button. Facebook, as everyone knows, is taking over everything on the web.

Show Mom You Really Care: Engraved iPods

Aw. Just in time for Mother’s Day, Apple is reminding everyone that you can get your iPods engraved. With a sweet little message just for mom.

I have one suggestion however: Your mom better not be of that certain age that looks at iPods as a “mysterious gadget.” If so, then your engraved iPod will fall into the category of cooking pots and pans and waffle irons. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.