With the rise of internet marketing, how have SMEs adapted to the change? From just 16 million internet users in 1995 to over 2750 million today and growing, there have definitely been changes in the world of business. Inbound marketing is 62% cheaper than traditional methods therefore, it must make business sense for SMEs to focus their budgets and efforts on this available and hungry market.

“The average person in Britain spends over 50 hours a week online.”

Social networking is taking over the world.

In only six years…

  • Facebook went from 12 million to 1 billion accounts

  • Twitter from 1 thousand to 500 million accounts

  • Linkedin went from 8 million to 200 million accounts

  • WordPress went from 600 thousand to 60 million

  • Google+ reached 400 million in less than 2 years

Graph showing the rise of social media.

SMEs can no longer ignore the possibilities of inboard marketing.

Could your company be throwing money down the drain? According to Mashable (see infographic) 44% of direct mail is never opened, 86% of TV ads are skipped and 91% of email users have unsubscribed from a company that they previously opted in to due to spam. (Using that knowledge, plus the fact that inbound marketing has lower costs and higher returns, it’s sure to be a winner for any business.)

  • 44% of direct mail is never opened

  • 86% of TV ads are skipped

  • 91% of people unsubscribe from opt in email due to spam.

Mobile Marketing.

Mobile marketing is also becoming more prominent as Smartphone technology develops. BDaily report that 27% of adults and 47% of teenagers now own a Smartphone and that by 2015 more than half the population will have and use Smartphones. However, BDaily also show that “66% of consumers would like to receive offers from brands they trust on their mobile devices, yet only 23% of consumers have.”

  • 27% of adults and 47% of teenagers own a Smartphone.

  • 66% of consumers would like to receive offers from brands they trust on their mobile devices, yet only 23% of consumers have

How SMEs are responding to the growth of inbound marketing.

The question is, are SMEs adapting to the change? Overall, 11% of SMEs admitting to not doing any of the marketing they had planned (Business Matters). The UK wide, 32% of SMEs are still to develop social media strategy (Talk Business). They also state that one in ten companies don’t know their own website statistics. A quote from Ian Simpson, managing director at C4B, says, “in order to keep your customers happy, you need to know how your website is used.” This is repeated by the Manchester Evening News which declares, “SMEs need to take note of the plethora of advice and statistics out there which reiterate the importance of social media engagement.”

From a statistical view of SMEs treatment of inbound marketing and social networking it’s clear that it’s not being used to its full extent. This poor treatment of inbound marketing clearly can’t be good for business in the long run and that’s a real problem.

What it’s costing SMEs.

Benifits of content marketing for SMEs.

Ignoring website statistics, neglecting social media and an overall lack of marketing is costing SMEs over £122 billion in sales per annum, according to Pitney Bowes. In 2012 Their research suggests that 87% of SMEs ignore the positive effect marketing can have and rather worryingly have discovered that for some SMEs “buying office stationery” ranks as a higher priority than marketing and business strategy.

  • Lack of marketing is proving to cost SMEs £122 billion in sales per annum

  • 87% of SMEs are ignoring the benefits of effective marketing

  • On average SMEs only spend £23,810 per annum

Evidence for the benefits of inbound marketing is overwhelming and cannot be ignored by any SME in the UK when planning a marketing strategy.