UK SMEs abandon traditional marketing in favour of online & mobile tools


Micro businesses are the most likely to have moved away from traditional offline marketing; in total more than half say that it accounts for less than 10% of their marketing and that they favour mobile and online avenues to grow their business.

Looking at which offline marketing techniques are being dropped, print advertising looks to be worst hit – whilst 40 per cent of SMEs have used it previously, only 28 per cent plan to invest further in this tactic in 2013. Direct mail is still playing a key part in the marketing plan. A fifth of businesses are looking to make an investment here in the next year, although the multichannel approach taken by many SMEs means some funds are being diverted online. The full report is available in online.

In contrast, confidence in mobile marketing is growing; mobile QR codes, mobile optimised websites and mobile payments will all attract investment from more SMEs than ever before in 2013. Additionally, mobile SEO and QR codes are now attracting nearly twice as much interest as previously.

Ryan Higginson, Vice President Digital Channel Europe, at Pitney Bowes, who commissioned the research, says: “Many SMEs’ success, and even survival, can depend on targeted, effective and easy to implement marketing that covers a multitude of channels. Offline will always play a very important role in any strategy but online has really come to the fore. Tools, such as pbSmart Essentials, are making this digital marketing transition easy and affordable for SMEs.”