All small businesses want for Christmas is a way to better connect to their customers, according to new research from BIA/Kelsey’s Local Commerce Monitor™ (LCM) survey of Small Businesses (SMBs). The LCM, Wave 21 survey reveals what marketing services and tools small businesses want to add to their marketing arsenals in 2018.
“Email marketing, business software tools, and online surveys are key wants for small businesses in the new year as they continue the struggle to manage marketing on multiple channels and connect with customers on different platforms,” said Celine Matthiessen, VP of Analysis and Insights, BIA/Kelsey.
The results showed good news for companies that offer either email marketing or SEO services to small businesses – with 39.6 percent and 38.8 percent respectively desiring to add these media channels to their advertising mix.
The third most popular channel small businesses want to add was video. According to the latest LCM data, 72.5 percent of small businesses had at least one video produced in the last 12 months, with two-thirds of them making the video themselves and another third using social media tools to create a video.
Small businesses’ customers are online and are looking to interact with the businesses they frequent. So it is no surprise that LCM showed online/cloud marketing services such as online satisfaction surveys, reputation monitoring, and online scheduling were high on their list of desired marketing services.
The list of marketing tools small businesses want to add may bring a good year to companies such as Microsoft. The number one marketing tool desired was business software, which includes Microsoft’s Office 365. Cross channel ad analytics and online/cloud services were also highly desired.
Offering small businesses marketing tools and services that help them connect with their customers (email marketing, SEO, surveys) and help them run their businesses more efficiently (business software, analytics, online/cloud services), are key areas of opportunity for B2B service providers in the coming year.
Other revelations about small businesses from LCM (Q3/2017):
- 45.4 percent maintain a Facebook Page
- 43.4 percent have at least one free social media account other than Facebook (Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.)
- 44.4 percent maintain a website
- 38.6 percent use email marketing