How Small Businesses Are Implementing Multichannel Marketing

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Taradel, a Virginia-based marketing company that specializes in multichannel marketing, recently released some findings on the subject from a survey of over 230 small business professionals polled via a SurveyMonkey questionnaire.

Participants were asked a series of 13 questions about small business marketing practices. Sixty-six percent of the respondents identified themselves as business owners. Another 22 percent had management or senior level roles within their respective companies.

“Advertisers with limited budgets continue to diversify their marketing strategy by embracing multichannel tactics,” the report says. “In 2019, only 18% of small business advertisers will rely on a single channel, with the majority (82%) using two or more. Changes in consumer activity and media consumption are the driving force behind most advertisers’ push to embrace multichannel marketing. With the global domination of email and mobile-first social platforms such as Facebook, advertisers are investing in ads that can reach target audiences anywhere at any time.”

It also notes that real-time user feedback, social engagement, shareability, and deep analytics are factors that make digital marketing campaigns attractive to advertisers. Here are some key statistics from the survey:

Graph of responses to the question "How Many Marketing Channels Does Your Business Actively Use?"

The report cites another study by Target Marketing finding that integrated campaigns produce the best results. In that study, print-only campaigns produced a six-percent response rate, while the same campaign distributed through both print and email experienced almost a 27-percent response rate.

When it comes to which channels offer the best return on investment, social media and direct mail win, based on Taradel’s survey.

Graph of responses to the question "Which Marketing Channel Delivers The Highest ROI For Your Business?"

When respondents were asked about the tactics they’re employing this year, 77 percent cited social media, 70 percent said direct mail and 54 percent said email marketing. Fifty percent said they would be using local event marketing.

Unsurprisingly, when asked which social media platform they used most, the majority (80 percent) said Facebook. Instagram, despite its increased popularity, still trailed at 33 percent, though the platform is owned by Facebook and utilizes many of the same marketing technologies and capabilities. LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube were further down the list at 22 percent, 17 percent and 11 percent, respectively. Pinterest came in at a mere five percent.

In this digital age, direct mail continues to play an important role among marketers. Seventy percent of respondents said they would use direct mail marketing this year. Forty-three percent said they would increase direct mail usage. Thirty-eight percent said direct mail marketing usage would remain steady, and just over 18 percent said they would reduce it. The report points out a noteworthy trend in that even tech startups and millennial-focused brands are shifting away from all-digital strategies and incorporating direct mail more into their efforts.

Ultimately, these studies show that small business marketers believe a multichannel approach is the best strategy to reach more eyeballs. Marketers see the value in spreading their message across formats, even as digital media has consumed much of the physical media in numerous industries.

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