2012 Study Reports Small Business Slow To Embrace Modern Marketing Strategies

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Small business marketing practices are usually heavy on traditional methods.  This is often due to the business being family owned or that it’s been around a long time and has built up personal relationships with its local customers.  A recent study supports this theory showing that the majority of small businesses surveyed choose traditional marketing methods over newer techniques including social media.

The Small Business Marketing Survey 2012 edition reports that out of 750 businesses responding on 17 percent (127 companies) are actively using social media networks for marketing campaigns. Other digital media marketing methods are not being utilized either.  Only 4 percent of the companies stated that they would institute QR codes for marketing purposes in the next 12 months.

What is small business using for marketing?  Here’s a breakdown of the traditional strategies being used:  46 percent say that email is their best marketing tool; 22 percent reported using a phone; and 11 percent utilize direct mail.

Surprisingly though, a large percentage still use the postal service for invoice delivery but very few of these use it for any form of direct mail marketing.  Only 18 percent used the mail service for newsletters or other marketing strategies.

The survey results made it clear that even though small business was using marketing in some form or another it could use some help to make their strategies more effective. A basic tenant of professional marketing is you must test, measure and retest your methods until you are maximizing your response rates.  The survey found that the majority of small businesses were not even measuring response rates at all let alone doing split tests to measure effectiveness.

Almost half of the businesses responding admitted to using only single channel marketing methods.   The report called this a phenomenon and pointed out the obvious that is businesses are leaving money on the table by not implementing multichannel marketing campaigns. Multichannel marketing simply multiplies the ways customers can purchase your product or service.  Implementing this approach offers a cost-effective method to increase sales and move ahead of the competition.

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