95 percent small businesses failed on social media

This is not a sweeping statement. 95% of small businesses, whether they are B2C (Business to Consumer) or B2B (Business to Business), has failed on social media marketing.

I had gone through and studied a random sample size of a hundred and fifty Singapore companies by studying their Facebook business pages and other social media pages (if any). These 150 small businesses are taken from various industry sectors.

I will give them a rating between one to ten points. Companies with 5 points and above are considered doing well on social media marketing. While those that scored 4.5 points and below, are not doing well on social media.

A screenshot of my research on Singapore’s 150 small business social media pages.

One of the criteria for the small businesses is that they must own a website that is working. Having their own websites will tell us that these 150 small businesses have already some sort of brand presence online.

7 Shocking Finds!


#1 – For every 25th to 31st company that I had researched, only one company is successful on leveraging social media marketing to their brand advantage. That means there is an estimated 95% failure rate among small businesses on social media.

#2 – Most companies doing B2B business, except for the marketing companies, do not have a Facebook page. While for those B2B companies that do have a Facebook page, they do not fully make use of Facebook to target and find their potential customers. Some of them treat their Facebook page like a “personal diary” rather than as a platform for them to build their presence and get customers.

#3 – Most small businesses do not have a proper social media URL. Some of the URL are not easy to remember. The URL link is often too long and there is no proper brand positioning. Too much punctuation marks are put in between their brand names which make it difficult for consumers to find or type their social media pages’ URL. For example, “www.facebook.com/wxyz-company-pte-ltd”.

#4 – Most small businesses merely are just “filling up space” by registering their names on social media. That is all. There is very little update from them on social media. Some companies do not even have a Facebook post yet even though their Facebook pages had been created years ago. (The longest one I found had joined Facebook in February 2011 and not a single post from this company yet.)

#5 – Small businesses that advertised heavily on traditional mass media do not do the same thing on social media. Some renowned companies in Singapore do not even have a social media page. It is either they do not believe in the power of social media or they do not have the manpower to help them manage their brands on social media.

#6 – Most companies that failed on social media treat social media as an advertising bulletin board. Their content on social media are all shout outs on their promotion, discounts and offers. Nothing much that is educational or of value to the consumers is posted in their content. Some companies even posted unrelated content or events such as their company’s outing or staff’s birthdays.  Some put up contests and freebies giveaway in order to drive traffic but these methods will not help in getting genuine customers to buy their products and services eventually.

Here's what the Facebook page will look like if the business overly advertise. (Image credits: pixalbay.com)
Here’s what the Facebook page will look like if the business advertised too much on it. (Image credits: pixalbay.com)

#7 – Some companies do have a lot of page likes but little interaction among the consumers. Interaction level is the number of people talking about the brand. Low interaction levels is probably because of inconsistent posts, too many link posts from third party websites, less interesting posts or the probability that the business may be buying likes.


a limit or

Of course, every research is only accurate to certain extent and here are some of the limitations from the findings.

1) Sample size is only 150. Well, it will take time to get more companies in to be part of the research.

2) Sample is only from Singapore companies. So maybe, different countries can have different approaches on social media marketing. Some maybe a little bit more active than the other.

3) Things will change for the better if the company starts to focus on branding on social media. Every business has an equal chance to succeed if they are willing to do so. The company that scored low points in rating now may suddenly do well on social media in the future. While the company that did well today, may not do well in the future too.

In summary,

Just like what renowned book author, Robert Kiyosaki said, “Inside of every problem lies an opportunity.” Hence, by looking at the reality that 95% of small businesses are not doing that well on social media, it will mean that we have the good chance of beating 95% of our industry competitors simply by leveraging on the effective social media marketing and branding strategies. Right? So let’s get started!