Highlights from McKinsey’s Global Study on How Companies are Benefiting from Web 2.0

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The management consulting firm of McKinsey & Company has been tracking and analyzing the adoption of Web 2.0 technologies for the last three years.  In this year’s study, they wanted to determine if companies were getting measurable business benefits from their investments in Web 2.0 technologies.

The short answer is YES as noted in this excerpt from the executive summary:

69 percent of respondents report that their companies have gained measurable business benefits, including more innovative products and services, more effective marketing, better access to knowledge, lower cost of doing business, and higher revenues.

As part of the study, they released an an interactive tool that lets users explore and customize three years of survey results.  For example, two areas where I have an interest – blogging and social media – have shown significant increases from 2007 to 2009.  In 2007, only 17% of companies maintained a blog and that grew to 46% in 2009.  Similarly, social media usage at the survey companies has grown from 19% in 2007 to 42% in 2009.

Another great insight is how companies are achieving measurable gains for Internal Purposes, Customer-related Purposes and Working with External Partners/Suppliers.  For example, 52% of companies say that they have increased their marketing effectiveness and the two most important technologies for this segment are blogs and social networks:

McKinsey Global Web 2.0 Study - Excerpt from Exhibit 1

McKinsey Global Web 2.0 Study – Excerpt from Exhibit 1

The Survey also suggested 2 additional points of good news for us involved in social media and Web 2.0 initiatives:

  1. More than 1/2 of the companies in this year’s survey plan to increase their investment and 1/4 expect their investments to stay the same
  2. Among companies who have gained measureable benefits, the current economic downturn has only increased their interest

Here is the link to the complete survey results along with some other suggested links with some great information – you may have to register for a free account at McKinsey, but it’s definitely worth it:


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