Live from Borrell Local Online Advertising Conference, NY (#2)

Local SMB Mobile Mash-up
2013 Preview

Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

In this session, Borrell Associates’ Larry Shaw, VP of research and Greg Harmon, senior research analyst, offered a glimpse of the latest SMB survey data that indicates a major increase in mobile marketing interest. Borrell Associates worked with local media companies throughout the U.S. to deliver this survey for their in-market SMB’s. The results were aggregated and analyzed for this research report that was presented.

First, a few notes about mobile usage:

  • Smartphones are used by over 125 million U.S. consumers
  • Tablets are used by more than 50 million U.S. consumers
  • One out of every three minutes spent online is now spent on a mobile device

Early take-aways from the 2013 SMB Mobile Mash-up Preview Report:

  • Mobile spend by SMB’s is typically proportionate to their total size. This is true for both large and small businesses.
  • SMB’s receive a lot of sales pressure from media companies:
    – On average, they receive 16 sales approaches per month and are likely to take seven sales pitches per month. The biggest reason SMB’s agree to a new sales call is to keep current with the latest advertising offerings/opportunities
  • Newspapers are still the leading media used in the local market (66%) followed closely by online/digital (64%); direct mail is still showing strong (46%)
  • Newspapers and online advertising combined captures 39% of local ad spending
  • Mobile participation is inching upward and now tops broadcast and cable TV
  • Mobile sales approaches to SMB’s in local markets has increased from 40% in 2011 to 57% in 2012. Mobile sales presentations has likewise increased during this same time from 14% to 23%
  • Majority of SMB’s that have sampled mobile will likely double down on their future mobile ad spending. This decision is tied to increased sales directly attributed to their mobile campaign
  • Most SMB’s keep a customer database (70%) but most (67%) do not have loyalty programs. Expect this to change dramatically as local businesses become more digital-minded
  • Emerging trends:
    – Social search tools
    – Reputation management/monitoring
    – Location-based advertising

The survey also reported the top three SMB challenges associated with mobile:

1. Lack of budget
2. Understanding mobile ROI
3. Complexity of mobile advertising is intimidating

Most SMB’s that have tried mobile will double down on their future mobile ad spending and these three challenges can be overcome with an effective, customized and an easy to understand mobile program.