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Socializing with the Fortune 500

35% are tweeting

March 5, 2010

A longitudinal study from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research shows steady uptake of social media marketing activities by Fortune 500 companies, with Twitter a clear winner.

Fortune 500 firms increased adoption of public blogs from 16% in 2008 to 22% in 2009, according to the research. A plurality of these blogs belong to the 100 largest companies in the group, though smaller companies ranked 401 through 500 gained share from 10% to 18% of the total over the time period.

2008 and 2009 Fortune 500 Companies that Have a Public-Facing Blog* (% of total)

Even more Fortunate 500 companies have a Twitter account—35% (Twitter usage was not studied in 2008). Four out of the top five corporations on the list post regularly to their Twitter accounts. As with blogs, the top 100 companies have the greatest share of social media presence.

2009 Fortune 500 Companies that Have a Twitter Account, by Rank (% of total*)

Many of the Fortune 500 are integrating their social efforts; 86% of those with blogs have a link to their Twitter account, for example. Three in 10 Fortune 500 blogs include video blogging, and 19% feature podcasts.

“The continued steady adoption of blogs and the explosive growth of Twitter among Fortune 500 companies demonstrate the growing importance of social media in the business world,” said Norah Ganim Barnes, senior fellow and research chair of the Society for New Communications Research and Chancellor Professor of Marketing at UMass Dartmouth, in a statement.

“These large and leading companies drive the American economy,” she said, “and to a large extent, the world economy.”

Previous data from the Center for Marketing Research showed that Fortune 500 companies were being outpaced by smaller, more nimble firms in the Inc. 500—a list of the fastest-growing private companies in the US. More than one-half of the group used Twitter in 2009.

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Check out today’s other article, “Clorox App Gives Consumers Content They Want.”


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