Efficacy of Social Media Utilization by Public Accounting Firms: Findings and Directions for Future Research


Social media presents a new platform for businesses to communicate and interact with others, both internally and externally. Social media may be utilized for activities such as sharing success stories and providing industry updates. Although a plethora of opportunities to achieve business objectives with social media usage exists, the efficacy of its use by public accounting firms is unclear. This article identifies the business objectives that Big 4 and second-tier firms are pursuing with social media. Primary business objectives being fulfilled by social media include Knowledge Sharing, Branding and Marketing, and Socialization and Onboarding. The findings suggest that Big 4 firms are pursuing Knowledge Sharing on Facebook™ and Twitter™ to a greater extent than second-tier firms, while second-tier firms pursue Socialization and Onboarding on Facebook and Branding and Marketing on Twitter to a greater extent than Big 4 firms. Suggestions for business opportunities and future research are also identified.


Business and Information Technology

Keywords and Phrases

Branding and marketing; Knowledge sharing; Public accounting firms; Social media; Socialization and onboarding

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

0888-7985; 1558-7959

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





© 2015 American Accounting Association, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 May 2015