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Fortune 500 Social Media Adoption Surging in 2012

by Lenna Garibian  |  
September 4, 2012

The use of blogging, Facebook, and Twitter among the nation's largest companies—those listed on the 2012 Fortune 500—has surged in 2012, according to a new study by the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth:

  • 73% now use Twitter (have an official corporate account with tweet activity in the previous month), up 11 percentage points (or 17.7%) from the 62% that did so in 2011.
  • 66% have a corporate Facebook page, up 8 points (or 13.8%) from the 58% that did so a year earlier.
  • 28% have a corporate public-facing blog from the primary corporation with posts in the previous 12 months, up 5 points (or 21.7%) from the 23% that did so in 2011.

Below, other findings from The Social Media Surge by the 2012 Fortune 500, issued by the Center for Marketing Research at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth.

Twitter Adoption

Some 365 (73%) of the 2012 F500 have a corporate Twitter account with a tweet in the previous thirty days; among them, the 10 largest companies (Exxon, Wal-Mart, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, General Motors, General Electric, Berkshire Hathaway, Fannie Mae, Ford Motors and Hewlett-Packard) consistently post to their Twitter accounts.

Twitter Accounts by Industry

The F500 companies with Twitter accounts come from a cross section of industries.

The food consumer products industry has the highest Twitter penetration with 93%, followed by the specialty retail and aerospace industries, each with 86%.

A partial list (below) shows those industries with the greatest presence on Twitter:

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Lenna Garibian is a MarketingProfs research writer and a marketing consultant in the tech industry, where she develops engaging content that builds thought leadership and revenue opportunities for clients. She's held marketing and research positions at eRPortal Software, GAP Inc., Stanford University, and the IMF. Reach Lenna via Twitter @LennaAnahid and LinkedIn.

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  • by George Fri Sep 7, 2012 via mobile

    Good article; it appears that those who don't use social media will be at a competitive disadvantage if they don't.

  • by Rose Sun Sep 23, 2012 via web

    I’m a person who is really behind the eight ball when it comes to being social media savvy. I find facebook and tweeting quite foreign and I just recently started my first blog. It is very evident that in order to be current and on top of things in Public Relations you need to learn how to use these communication tools. I agree with a previous post that if you don't educate yourself you will be a great disadvantage in this competitive world we live in. I am definitely in a learning curve when it comes to these social media platforms. This article made me realize how important it is and how some of the nation’s largest companies are using it. There is an expertise in this particular area that I lack and I will have to be more open to exploring. In order to keep up with changing times I have to continue to improve and educate myself and enhance my skills and qualities in social media. This was a very detailed and informative article.

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