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  • 1.
    Melsheimer, Robin
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    A key to success?: A critical analysis of the social media strategies of online start-ups in Berlin2016Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Despite their importance for every nation’s welfare, research regarding small and medium sized enterprises and their high rate of business failure still discloses many research gaps. Especially the heterogeneity of SMEs has found little attention in prior research. By analysing online start-ups from Berlin, this thesis sheds more light on the ways with which online start-ups as a unique subtype of SMEs use social media and increase their performance and thus survivability. For this, interviews with the marketing managers of four different online start-ups from Berlin were conducted. The study revealed that regardless of their tech savviness, these companies still have room for improvement in their social media activities. Despite that, however, findings suggest that online start-ups do show a better understanding of social media than prior studies suggest. Future research is therefore encouraged to acknowledge the differences between different types of SMEs and the implications that this can have for the transferability of results between studies. Furthermore, the analysis of the gathered data led to the assumption that best practices regarding social media, as they were done in former studies, might not be generalizable, but have to be adjusted according to aspects such as the product type, the level of involvement or the customer demographics. While the results of the study are limited to online start-ups in Berlin it they still provide helpful information for young companies to see how they can improve their social media efforts.

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