2018 is looking to be a good year for small business.
My personal definition of “a small business” is an owner-operator doing between $1M and $75M a year. I do not pretend to know the trends outside this group.
The following are the small business trends that seem to be emerging in 2018:
1: Small businesses are falling out of love with social media and with SEO (Search Engine Optimization.)
2: Broadcast Radio and Broadcast Television are regaining their previous stature within ad budgets due to the excellent values available at this time.
3: Business owners are beginning to learn the power of having a memorable personality. (The typical company spokesperson is “polished and professional.” Which is just another way of saying “bland, vanilla-neutral. Unremarkable. Interchangeable. Easy to ignore.” Criticism is the price of personality. Which is why so few company spokespersons have any.)
Brad and Sarah Casebier used the power of personality to grow their tiny little company in Austin, Texas to astonishing levels of success. You can hear the ad they currently have on the radio on the first page of today’s rabbit hole.
4: Experiments with ads in online radio (Pandora, etc.) have typically been disappointments and word is spreading quickly.
5: Google is actively blocking all attempts by SEO specialists to “game” a client’s ranking on Google.
6: The most savvy online marketing people are openly advocating that mass media is the most efficient way to drive “direct navigation” to your website. (Direct Navigation is currently the single, most important criteria used by Google to determine the search engine ranking of your website. Number two is Time on Site. Number three is Pages Per Session. That being said, there are at least 14 other, smaller criteria considered by Google, but with each one having a decreasing degree of importance.)
7: Sensing the dying momentum for their services, SEO consultants are beginning to push harder than ever in their search for new clients.
8: Recognizing the importance of aligning all their channels of customer communication, business owners are becoming adamant that their online marketing contain the words and phrases [brandable chunks] that have been popularized through their mass media ads.
9: Extremely savvy business owners are taking this concept of “channel alignment” to its ultimate end: ongoing agreement, alignment and reinforcement of mass media messaging throughout all their:
A. online efforts,
B. direct mail, including invoicing
D. outbound calls,
E. conversations of Customer Service Representatives with inbound callers
F. weekly orientation and training of salespeople
G. weekly orientation and training of all other employees who might interact with the public on behalf of the company.
Let me say this as plainly as I can. The smartest and most successful small business owners are orchestrating and aligning all these previously “siloed” departments into a single, concerted voice.
And it’s about time.
Roy H. Williams
Rick Snyder was living and working in Oregon when he felt he should get out of the American bubble and move to the South of France. So he did. But that wasn’t odd for Rick. He teaches global business owners and entrepreneurs to listen closely to that instinctive voice inside of them and act more frequently on their sixth, intuitive sense. Rick is in the process of writing a tell-all book about using intuition as a North Star in business. Listen in as Roving Reporter Rotbart – who confesses that his intuition has sometimes led him astray – learns that intuition, like any important skill, can be refined with coaching and practice. You’re definitely going to benefit from this week’s episode at MondayMorningRadio.com.