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SMB Marketers Abandoning Traditional Ads


eMarketer reports that according to a poll of U.S. marketers by Bredin Business Information, the primary challenges in marketing to American small businesses are funding new projects, growing the business with limited resources and increasing awareness.

In addition, marketers say the outlook for small business marketing has changed in 2009. They are increasing their online activities, becoming more focused and conducting segmentation research to better target their customers.

It is no surprise that the local online marketing space is where many small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are moving their efforts -- and their marketing investment.

It's apparent that digital marketing has gained increased adoption at the expense of legacy advertising approaches -- in particular yellow page directory listings and direct mail coupons. The leaders in both forms of mass-media publishing failed to migrate their value proposition to the online model.

Clearly, in 2009 more savvy SMB marketers will abandon traditional advertising that delivers a consistently low return on investment. Search engine marketing will garner the most converts. Social media marketing and search engine optimization practices will also increase in adoption.

Borrell Associates estimated SMBs invested $7.4 billion on local online marketing in 2008. That figure accounted for 11 percent of all SMB marketing spending, and more than one-half of total U.S. local digital spending, including Website development.

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