Veterans make up one in 10 small business owners, employing close to 5 million American workers and producing over $1 trillion in sales annually. And increasingly social media is playing a bigger role to grow their business, more specifically Facebook.
According to a new report, 61% of vets are using Facebook more than other groups to grow their business across different operations of their company. This was 34% more than other small businsses.
Social media use has increased across the board among all small business owners in recent years. But vets are outperforming or leading the way when it comes to using social media and digital platforms to grow their businesses.
The report includes two business surveys carried out by Morning Consult in collaboration with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and its Chamber Technology Engagement Center (C_TEC), and Facebook.
The first survey was a national poll of 1,000 small businesses and 50 state-level polls of 100 small businesses. The second survey questioned more than 5,000 adult consumers in the US on the perceived benefits of digital platforms on business and employment outcomes.
Vets and Facebook
When it comes to veterans, Facebook has been a valuable tool for increasing the performance of their business across different benchmarks.
In addition to the 61% who reported they built their business on Facebook, almost two thirds or 63% also said they have increased hiring since joining Facebook. Again this was considerably higher than the overall small business owners in the country by 25 percentage points.
Facebook also improved sales for 70% of vets, a 16 percentage point improvement from the overall group. This includes improving how vets trade with other cities, states, or countries by opening more opportunities. And 74% acknowledged they have used these opportunities to grow their business, which is 25 percentage points higher than other small businesses.
Impact of Technology on Small Business
More than 80% of Americans now shop online. As a small business owner having a digital presence is extremely important to ensure the long term success of your company.
In the report Morning Consult cites a 2017 Deloitte report in which the most digitally advanced U.S. small businesses earned two times as much revenue per employee. The revenue growth of these businesses was also nearly four times as high, while creating more jobs compared to their previous year.
The adoption of digital technology now includes social networks. And when it comes to Facebook more than 1.5 billion of its monthly active users are connected to a business on the platform. And more than half a billion or 580 million are connected to an American business.
With the global number of social network users worldwide projected to grow to more than three billion by 2021, the opportunities are there for the taking.
The amount of technology in the marketplace can be overwhelming. But small business owners, whether they are vets or not, have to customize the available technology to address the needs of their company.
The report says using these technologies has become routine parts of how business owners operate. And cost or expertise is not a barrier in most cases because online tools are inexpensive and easy to use.
More importantly, customers increasingly expect to access online options as part of their experience even if they do business with a physical store.
If small business owners want to succeed, they have to build and implement a strategy of online customer, vendor, and employee engagement starting now, if they haven’t already started.
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