How much do you really know about digital marketing? Are you up-to-date on the latest Google changes such as the ones that will penalize you organically on mobile devices if you don’t have a mobile-friendly website?
While 37% of small business owners said they planned to spend more on digital marketing in the next 12 months, according to a BrightLocal study in November 2014, only 29% said that they understand it and do it themselves. Three-quarters of the SMB respondents in the BrightLocal survey said digital marketing was effective for attracting customers but a lack of skill sets, budgeting and time prevent them from making true ROI advancements. If digital marketing is such an effective medium and only 29% of respondents said they understood it enough to do it themselves, why aren’t more SMBs hiring experts to help them achieve better ROI via online marketing?
Based on the BrightLocal survey, respondents had the following attitude toward digital marketing.
- 29% I understand and I do it all myself
- 28% I’m learning and want to do it myself
- 17% I’d like to do it but don’t have the budget
- 10% I’d like to do it but don’t have the time
- 4% I don’t understand it or feel confident doing it
- 2% I’m not interested and don’t think it works for me
Despite budget issues, more SMBs do seem to be willing to invest in hiring an expert to help them with their digital marketing. While 64% of respondents handled digital marketing in-house, this was down 4% compared to 2013. And respondents who hired a consultancy or agency was up 3% in 2014 compared to 2013.
And when SMBs were asked in a December 2014 survey by The Alternative Board about the areas they would have spent more money and/or time when they starting their business, 38% said they would have spent more money on marketing/advertising/PR.
If you are like a lot of business owners, such as the respondents above who like to handle their own marketing, you naturally take charge of everything needed to operate your business. But when it comes to digital marketing, SMBs must embrace some new realities. Hiring an expert is ok. With the ever-changing and evolving digital landscape it’s not that you can’t learn about digital marketing but do you really have the time to learn it and stay up-to-date?
In the early days of digital marketing, it was all about Google. If you learned enough about Google AdWords and basic SEO best practices, you could do extremely well managing your own digital marketing strategy. In today’s world there is Google, Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, Bing, Yelp, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and a multitude of other sites and online strategies that you have to know. And just when you think you’ve learned it all the game changes. Whether it’s new emerging technologies or continual shifts in best practices, such as Google’s frequent AdWords changes or algorithm updates, it’s almost impossible to run your business and stay up-to-date on digital best practices.
That’s where hiring an expert comes in. Hire an expert whose job is to stay up-to-date on the ever-evolving digital landscape. They can help you develop, implement, track, measure and revise your digital marketing strategy to continual get maximum return on your investment.
About Alan Moore: Alan started his career in 1999 as an Marketing Consultant and is the owner of www.ExtraPatients.com. Over the years, he has migrated his focus of expertise to everything digital. His mission is to help you increase your revenues and decrease unproductive advertising expenses through proven, online marketing strategies. He manages over $3,600,000 in yearly marketing budgets and has worked with local businesses, agencies and the US government. Give him a call to schedule a Free Online Marketing Consultation for your practice.
To read more of the article that inspired this blog, please visit:http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Digital-SMBs-Need-Somebodyand-Moneyto-Lean-On/1011902/1