Small Businesses: Web 2.0 – NO WAY

Ouch. Research firm Bredin Business surveyed a few hundred small businesses and found out that they are resistant to using Web 2.0 technology to obtain information.
The report finds that email newsletters are still quite popular (I guess the folks at Constant Contact and iContact are cheering!).
The study asked over 300 U.S.-based SMBs to assess the importance of various Web 2.0 formats as sources of business management information over the next five years. Only 14% expect that blogs will be very or extremely important, with similar ratings coming in for wikis (21%), social networking sites (22%) and webcasts (31%). At the same time, more traditional methods of delivering resource information ranked high, with 49% rating email newsletters as very or extremely valuable over the next five years, and 46% giving that ranking to interactive tools such as quizzes or calculators.
Ironically small business marketers plan to use more web 2.0 tools to reach small businesses.
BBI simultaneously surveyed marketers at companies that sell to SMBs to rate the value of these tools for marketing purposes. The disparity between marketer’s plans to offer these tools with SMB interest in using them is striking. For example, 39% of marketers rated blogs as very/extremely valuable over the next five years (25 percentage points more than SMBs), and 67% rated webcasts as very/highly valuable (31 points higher than SMBs).
Digging deeper into things might clarify a few things – or raise more questions.
1 – There is “high-growth” segment of small businesses that will use Web 2.0 tools for information finding and marketing. There are hundreds of thousands of users on LinkedIn and Jigsaw. Let’s not forget the many folks (many in business) in Facebook.
2 – There’s a certain segment of business that will never and/or be VERY slow in embracing new technologies. These are the kind of small business who got their first fax machine last week.
3 – Using Web 2.0 is easy for many of us, but think of the many people that find getting all they can from Word hard to do – how can Web 2.0 be any easier?
Read the press release here.