Local SMBs Are Increasing Digital And Traditional Media Spend

by | 2 minute read

Local marketers still believe in the power of advertising. That’s one of the key findings in the 2019 Local Advertising Survey recently published by Borrell Associates. Of the 2,288 businesses that participated in the survey, 78% have fewer than 100 employees. Only about 15% of these businesses have ad budgets that exceed $200,000. However, there’s plenty of opportunity in the local market for reps who sell media and digital marketing services.

TV and Larger Local Businesses

This year, around 20% of surveyed businesses have increased their ad spending. These businesses continue to spend most of their budget on local broadcast TV. On average, this works out to about $95,816. Local businesses also like cable TV and advanced TV platforms. However, only larger local businesses, the top 20%, have big enough budgets to fund TV ad campaigns. Of the businesses that purchase TV, about 50% have purchased ads on advanced platforms.

Traditional Media and Local SMBs

The typical local business, your prospect, uses 3.4 kinds of traditional advertising and 2.6 types of digital advertising. On average, the spend ratio is nearly two to one in favor of traditional formats. Not surprisingly, the most popular digital format for your local prospects is social media. 62% of businesses in the Borrell survey pay for ads on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or another social site. But they’re also buying ads on traditional formats other than TV:

  • Newspapers 50%
  • Radio 44%
  • Out-of-home 26%

Advice Needed

Only 25% of respondents in the Borrell survey call themselves master ad buyers. The rest need help. Around half of these businesses aren’t sure they are using the right media mix. Even worse, they don’t know if what they are doing is working.

This situation begs for a consultative sales approach. Over 40% of prospects are open to trying something new. Before you reach out to a prospect with your pitch, make sure you are delivering what they want. In the 2019 SMB Purchase Survey from SalesFuel, 59% of decision-makers want you to know your product and 45% want you to provide ideas that are relevant to their business.

To do that, check out the Digital Audit available at AdMall from SalesFuel. With that information, you can show prospects how they stack up digitally against their local competitors.

Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.