By Rieva Lesonsky

Is your small business falling behind the curve? You might be if you’re not incorporating social media as a marketing tool. But if you think the “cutting edge” social media users are found mostly in the nation’s big cities, think again. A new study conducted by Zoomerang Online Surveys and Polls found that small and midsized businesses in the Great Plains and Southeast are actually leading the pack when it comes to social media.

Of those surveyed, businesses in the Great Plains and Southeast states are more likely than SMBs in other parts of the country to have branded social media channels at 30 percent and 28 percent, respectively. What’s more, SMB decision makers in the Southeast (28 percent) and Great Plains (22 percent) regions are among the most active in using social media on behalf of their businesses.

While it might seem counterintuitive, the finding actually makes a lot of sense. “Less-populated areas or cities with a strong small business presence are relying more and more on cost-effective mass-communication tools for business news, customer support and acquisition, as well as networking,” said Alex Terry, General Manager of Zoomerang. “For people immersed in technology driven cultures, such as Silicon Valley, this data may come as a surprise, but I believe they can learn from less-technology enriched regions.”

Among the regions that have been slower to adopt social media are the Northeast (which includes New England and New York) and the Mid-Atlantic regions.

To view an infographic of region-by-region social media adoption among SMBs, visit the Zoomerang website.