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2012 Small Business Marketing Trends

Submitted by on December 16, 2011 – 4:26 pmNo Comment | 5,818 views

2012 Small Business Marketing Trends

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This post originally appeared on Area’s Best Marketing.

I have spent a lot of time reading about the latest and greatest trends that small businesses should look for in 2012.  It should be an interesting year for you as you try to wade through all of the new ways to reach customers.

Just when you thought you understood how to use social media, local directories and discounted deal programs an influx of new trends come rushing in.    Trends that will challenge even the brightest small business owner.  You can expect to adopt these new ideas but it will come more slowly and in ways that don’t necessarily fit the original use.

In 2012, businesses like yours may even be slower to adopt these new trends given the present state of the economy.  Many of you have cut your expenditures to the bone and are working overtime just to get by.  This doesn’t leave much time to understand how these new business trends will affect your business and more importantly how to take advantage of these trends to reach new customers.  Let’s take a look at some of the trends in 2012 that small businesses should be aware of:

The mobile consumer shops locally

Mobile has arrived at the door step of your business primarily because of the rapid adoption of the smart phone leading to a behavior shift to mobile.  Take for instance the recent promotion between foursquare and American Express.  This promotion tied in local businesses with foursquare, a location-based social networking website for mobile devices. It offered small businesses like yours the opportunity to offer discounts by way of credits applied to participating consumer Amex cards.

The mobile market will continue to expand, and as it does, people will use their phones to find local businesses with the intent to make a purchase.

Social networks become another marketplace

Today’s social networks continue to grow and become more a part of our lives.  Our behaviors are evolving to the point that when we first go online each day we check in with our network of choice.

In 2012 social networks will become their own wholly functioning, self contained marketplace.  As small business owners and marketers it is important that you become engaged with these networks and educate yourself about them.  Be ready to set up shop as these networks open for business for both network consumers and small businesses.


Trade content for customer data 

Have you begun an online dialogue with your customers?  Do you have a blog? If not then get started.  For those small businesses that already have a content strategy; one that is primarily used to inform, educate, build trust and document company success, you’ll need to evolve in 2012.

Take the next step by creating and offering content in the form of white papers, video seminars and content enhanced products.  Create landing pages to capture data from people requesting your enhanced content.  Collect this data and begin a consistent dialogue with these people—they represent qualified customers.

Have a question or comment?  Tell us what you think. Need some advice and direction, speak with one of our marketing experts.