35% of UK firms using Twitter for business

James Caan advises companies to ensure security when Tweeting

As Twitter today celebrates its fifth birthday, British firms are increasingly using the microblogging site to harness their marketing potential, according to a new report.

A Virgin Media poll of 5,000 UK businesses found that Twitter is used by 35% of UK companies to market their business. The site is most popular with legal organisations, with 12% regularly using the social network for business purposes.

Twitter is the also most popular social networking site for businesses in the North West, Northern Ireland and the North East, where it is used by 12% of all companies.

Welsh firms are least likely to use Twitter, with just 7% currently signed up to the site.

Commenting on the anniversary, Phil Stewart, customer service director at Virgin Media Business, said: “When Twitter first launched in 2006 it would have been impossible to predict what impact it would have on the way that we all communicate.

“However the site also has a serious side, with 35% of UK businesses using it to engage with customers, provide customer service and promote products, services and job vacancies.”

However, former Dragons’ Den star James Caan has warned entrepreneurs to remember that there potential security risks involved with using social media and to ensure that security strategies are put in place.

Caan advised: “Imagine if someone was to hack into my account and start sending out virus links to my followers or started to impersonate me. This would have a damaging impact to my businesses.

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“Social media strategies require planning and time to ensure the right foundations are in place. Done correctly the return on investment can be huge, and the risks can be negated before you start.”

© Crimson Business. Ltd 2011



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