Infographic: SMBs Play an Essential Role in the Big Brand Game

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When it comes to small and medium-size business (SMB) customers, brands aren't playing around. According to the “Business Traction from Smarter SMB Interaction,” study by the CMO Council and Penton, 70% of marketers selling to SMBs deem the market extremely important.

These brands don't just view SMBs as pawns in their marketing game. Nearly half of the marketers surveyed (47%) indicate that they have strong connections within this segment and are growing relationships. And good business can cause a domino effect that leads to future purchases. In fact, 22% of respondents believe that, based on repeat business and purchases, they have loyal SMB customers, and 66% of marketers intend to focus more on the SMB market.

As far as creating SMB-centric experiences, many organizations seem to have a winning strategy on the surface. Forty percent of marketers surveyed have SMB-specific marketing departments or functions within their organizations. In addition, 60% of marketers are allocating up to 40% of their marketing budgets to SMB market penetration and development, according to the study. But is it possible that these brands just don't have a Clue about what SMBs really want? Just 6% of marketers say their organizations are extremely effective at determining a clear return on their SMB marketing investments, and only 8% of respondents say that they have a 360-degree view of their SMB customers.

So what's causing brands to experience so much Trouble? Apparently, marketers are in a constant Scrabble for data. Although 50% of marketers surveyed say they have good transactional, behavioral, and customer support data, 21% of respondents say that their customer data is in silos. In addition, 39% of marketers just have basic contact details—without detailed profiles—according to the study.

It's possible that marketers aren't Monopolizing all of their data resources. For instance, just 15% use social media analytics to dive deep into its markets, according to the study. Likewise, only 18% of marketers acquire data from online SMB communities. But marketers will have to head down every chute and climb every ladder if they hope to win more business.

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