Small Business Marketing Trends

As a small business owner, you wear many hats. CEO, accountant, HR manager, marketing director, and more. In your marketing function, knowledge of upcoming trends is important – especially when they will directly effect you!

There are lots of articles out there about marketing trends, and how small business owners can reach their customers, but wouldn’t it also be helpful to know how larger companies plan on marketing to you? We think it would, so today we’re going to discuss a recent study that looked into just that.

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The small business landscape is one that is always changing. What’s true of this intrepid group one year may take an unexpected turn the next. So it’s always fascinating to touch base with business owners and learn about their needs, challenges, and aspirations for their businesses.

The infographic below summarizes the Webs Small Business Digital Trends Survey – the latest findings based on the responses of over 2,200 small business owners in the United States. Much of what you find below will probably confirm what you have experienced, and some of it might really surprise you. Here are a few of the stats that really stood out to us:

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Today’s article comes from Deanna Zaucha, Webs Retention Marketing Coordinator. 

In business, we are bombarded by the importance of “Big Data”. How we must strive to collect, analyze, and use it to make strategic business decisions. Amazon paved the way with predicting our purchase desires in the email inbox, and now we see it in production in a relative newcomer, Netflix.

Netflix, for those who may not be up to date on this whole “Internet” thing, is an on-demand Internet streaming service available with your $7.99 subscription and addiction to any TV series or movie. It even helped coined the term binge-watching – “The practice of watching television for longer time spans than usual, usually of a single television show” – Wikipedia.com.

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Today’s article comes from Alex Mitchell, our Lead Analyst, who somehow became the marketing team’s leading expert on Snapchat. 

Unless you’ve been ignoring mainstream media for the past 6 months or don’t have tweens living in your house, you probably have heard of Snapchat, the latest tech fad that has gained massive popularity in a very short time.

Snapchat allows users to send pictures to friends with the unique twist that they are only viewable for a short period of time (typically 1 — 10 seconds) before they disappear.

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Last week, American Express and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) released some exciting stats on this year’s Small Business Saturday (November 30th). Here are 5 things you should take away from the 2013 Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey:

1. More people know about Small Business Saturday than ever.
The marketing and awareness campaigns on traditional and social media have been successful in spreading the word. Consumer awareness of the event has grown from 67% in 2013 to 71% in 2013.

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As our month-long series on holiday marketing planning continues, we’re bring back a popular infographic from last year that takes a look at holiday sales trends, U.S. ecommerce projections, and way to optimize your holiday sales funnel.

This year, online sales in the United States are projected to exceed $61 billion in the last two months of the year, according to the latest eMarketer projections. Based on that research, the folks at PracticalCommerce.com have put together 6 trend predictions that could have a big affect on your small business this holiday season.

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For today’s look at a current trend in marketing, we’ll hear from Web’s Retention Marketing Manager Phillip Fass.

Dispelling the myth that video and email don’t mix.
As an Email marketer with many years’ experience, one of the most exciting developments in email marketing for me is that of video in email. At one time it was taboo to even think about including such a ‘wild’ element into your email creative, but with the advent of HTML5, this creative technique to showcase your product is much simpler (and safer) to do. You no longer need to rely on a 3rd party plug-in, like Flash or QuickTime, to assist with the video playback. These plug-ins were security ‘red flags’ to email clients and often placed your email in the bulk folder, or got it caught up in spam traps.

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Last week we took a look at recent trends in the three major sources of small business financing. With that in mind, today’s post will focus on where those funds are being spent by the businesses that acquire them.

A recent study by Visa Small Business, released in November, identified key areas in which small businesses are increasing their spending levels. Today we’ll talk about 3 of those areas.

1. Capital Investments
According to this study, there’s been an increase in the number of businesses that plan to invest in things like inventory, machinery, and facilities — capital investments that will grown their businesses. This is a great sign in terms of what it means for the place of small businesses in the economy. The fact that so many business owners are investing in the future of their businesses means that they feel optimistic about their business having a future. Several years ago, that level of confidence in the economy was uncommon.

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Whether your small business is just starting out, or you’re looking for the funds to take it to the next level, it’s important to be aware of the alternative sources of funding available to you beyond the traditional small business loan options.

The world of funding for startups and entrepreneurs has changed pretty dramatically in the last few years. As has been the trend in the world at large, things have moved away from the one-on-one transactions and toward a more social model that leverages the viral potential of the Web.

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