Last month, Bredin Business Information put out a study about the marketing goals of small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs). What’s particularly striking about the report, though, is how digital messaging can help these companies reach their goals.
Here’s a look at some of the data offered in the study, and how digital message marketing–emails and text messages that consumers choose to receive–fits into these objectives.
Marketers said their biggest challenges in 2009 include growing business with limited resources (15 percent) and increasing awareness (15 percent). Email and SMS marketing can be very cost-effective, especially with a do-it-yourself system that can tackle several message types with one platform (like mobileStorm’s). So marketers from smaller businesses with limited budgets can easily afford these types of campaigns. Meanwhile, both email and text messages increase brand awareness because they are extremely viral. That is, they are often and easily forwarded from the initial recipient to several new ones–especially if they contain valuable information such as a limited sale or a space on the VIP list for a one-time party.
Retention and acquisition of customers: 48 percent said they are balancing their acquisition and retention efforts this year, 32 percent are concentrating more on acquisition, and 20 percent are focusing more on retention. Digital messages help marketers both acquire and retain customers. A multi-channel campaign draws consumers in–that is, it uses other media to advertise the short code and keyword, or the Web form, for consumers to contact in order to receive texts or emails, respectively. These consumers can be converted when the messages offer coupons, new product announcements, or other information that encourages the sale. Then once these customers see these benefits, they’ll likely continue to patronize the company in question.
Marketers will spend less on market research in 2009 than in 2008. Because of this, marketers will want to do their own research. The right marketing platform will let them do so. It can sort message subscribers according to geographic, demographic, and eve”n psychographic” categories. It can also let the marketer know which campaigns were the most–or least–effective, so that they can improve future campaign efforts. Marketers can thus arm themselves with home-grown research that lets them cater specifically to their own customers, as well as consumers like them who they want to reach.