Over half of small business owners say generating new customers is a challenge, yet nearly two-thirds do not use outside support for marketing assistance, according to a survey of US small businesses from the Yellow Pages Association (YPA).
It found that the smallest of businesses — those with one to five employees — are most likely (70%) not to consult with anyone when making advertising/marketing selections. On the other hand, half (51%) of businesses with six to 10 employees and only one-third (34%) of those with over 11 employees do not consult with outside sources.
Surprisingly, it also found that 26% of respondents did not use any type of ROI tracking to measure the success of their marketing efforts. Other areas frequently perceived among the toughest challenges include limited advertising budgets (17%) and the lack of knowledge when it comes to where to advertise (10%). The report also found that urban businesses have a better understanding of marketing but are much more likely to face challenges generating new customers than businesses located in rural areas where business may not be quite as competitive.
These findings are interesting and seem to confirm what most of us believe about small business marketing.
- Finding new customers (and retaining current customers) is key challenge for all businesses but is essential to survive and grow.
- Getting the best results for your marketing dollars is crucial, especially in these tough economic times.
- Keeping up with the many different marketing strategies in this new internet-driven business environment is not easy.
- Urban businesses face a more competitive environment where marketing is even more critical.
- Larger companies (which by definition are usually more successful) are more prone to using outside marketing resources.
Conclusion? Marketing effectiveness is more important than ever for small business success. The key to marketing effectiveness is, of course, knowing all the different marketing strategies available but more importantly, having a plan and keeping score to make sure you do more of what’s working and cut your losses on what isn’t.
To see the full report and findings visit;
– Steve (www.SPMsolutions.NET)