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MORE THAN 'FRIENDS' - The Creative Group Survey Shows Increasing Use of Social Media for Business

MENLO PARK, Calif., Aug. 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Facebook may be where you catch up with pals, but a new survey by The Creative Group confirms it's increasingly a place for business. Nearly half (46 percent) of advertising and marketing executives interviewed said they currently use Facebook for professional purposes. Fifty-six percent of respondents expect to take advantage of this social network for business in the next three years.  

The national survey was developed by The Creative Group, a specialized staffing service providing interactive, design, advertising, marketing and public relations professionals on a project and full-time basis, and conducted by an independent research firm.

Advertising and marketing executives were asked, "Do you currently use Facebook for professional or business purposes?" Their responses:

   

Yes.............................................

  46%

 

No...............................................

 54%

 
 

100%

 
   
   

 

Executives also were asked, "Do you think you will use Facebook for professional or business purposes within the next three years?" Their responses:

   

Yes...........................................

56%

 

No.............................................

 44%

 
 

100%

 
   
   

 

When respondents were asked to estimate what percentage of their Facebook friends are business or professional contacts, the mean response was 21 percent.

"Chances are, nearly everyone you know -- from your dentist to your colleague -- is a part of at least one online community," said Donna Farrugia, executive director of The Creative Group. "Whether it's Facebook, Twitter or Google+, people are finding social networks useful for expanding their professional contact base, mining information that can help them in their careers, and showcasing their strengths and industry expertise."

The Creative Group offers five ideas for maximizing social networks to boost your career:

  1. Divide and conquer. Not everyone in your social network needs to know about your Friday dinner plans or musings on the latest blockbuster movie. Segment your friend lists so professional contacts aren't inundated with updates they wouldn't want to -- or shouldn't -- see. Also check your privacy settings to control who has access to what information.
  2. Be a guru. Share nuggets of useful information with your business contacts, and offer advice when they ask for recommendations or ideas.
  3. Give and you shall receive. Be generous with your contacts by offering to make introductions or sharing useful information they post with your own network.
  4. Use photo features. Even if you maintain a personal website or digital portfolio, you can provide your online contacts with a snapshot of your latest professional project or even your entire body of work. Creating albums on Flickr or Facebook, or using Twitpic or similar photo-sharing tools, is an easy way to visually show potential clients or employers your career accomplishments and showcase new skills.
  5. Resist the urge to rant. Never say anything disparaging about your current or former company, coworkers, clients or other business contacts. You never know who might see your comments and forward them on.

 

For additional etiquette tips on using social and professional networking sites, download Business Etiquette: The New Rules in a Digital Age, at www.roberthalf.us/businessetiquette. The comprehensive guide was developed by Robert Half, The Creative Group's parent company, and contains insights from industry experts on a wide range of topics.

 

About the Survey

The national study was developed by The Creative Group and conducted by an independent research firm. It is based on more than 500 telephone interviews -- approximately 375 with marketing executives randomly selected from companies with 100 or more employees and 125 with advertising executives randomly selected from agencies with 20 or more employees.

About The Creative Group

The Creative Group specializes in placing a range of highly skilled interactive, design, advertising, marketing and public relations professionals with a variety of firms on a project and full-time basis. More information, including online job-hunting services, candidate portfolios and The Creative Group's award-winning career magazine, can be found at www.creativegroup.com.

SOURCE The Creative Group

For further information: Alison Hau, +1-650-234-6277, alison.hau@creativegroup.com