Being a small business entrepreneur is a synonym of excitement driven, adventure-oriented business challengers. But in the last one year, entrepreneurs often came across several tough situations while dealing with day to day business challenges. In the COVID Pandemic, the list of challenges got multiplied. Executing the day to day business activities successfully and smoothly becomes tough for many Entrepreneurs from MSMEs or Small Business segment because of the halted activities in business. In today’s post-COVID scenario, a lot has been restructured in business operations. Although it is also true that not everything in business can be put aside in the name of cost control. Some things are must to do and some business elements are on the threshold of becoming a business necessity. Among such threshold business essentials, marketing and digital marketing have their own space.
In this report we will discuss one such business necessity called digital marketing. It is very clearly and unanimously understood that marketing is part of the must-to-have element for every small business. But, the critical aspect of marketing is the fact that components of digital marketing keep changing according to the necessity of each business.
Though every entrepreneur understands the criticality of marketing and digital marketing for his/her business, the conventional understanding has transformed due to the recent COVID Pandemic.
At SMEStreet we reached out to over 600 MSMEs and startups to check their outlook towards their digital marketing and found following list of pointers which according to them are among top priorities with respect to Digital Marketing in 2021 and beyond. Here are top five keys:
- New Age Social Media Marketing
- Digital Well-Being of Business
- Communications & Collaboration Technologies
- Video Marketing
- Digital Security
The above-mentioned pointers emerged as top keys for MSME or Small Business Entrepreneurs with regarding to Digital Marketing in the post covid scenario which 2021 and beyond.
We discussed the same with some Digital marketing experts and tries to understand what actually elaborates these keys as parameters for Digital marketing in 2021.
In a conversation with SMEStreet, Syed Sarwar Mehdi, CEO of Webaly Branding acknowledged that the points mentioned above stand very critical in contemporary digital marketing after COVID’s negative impact on business mobility. “There is no doubt that businesses have experienced a significant change in the way they use to operate. Digital Marketing is still considered to be a major driver for every business and small business in particular. Now, we the advent of restricted mobility, people are spending more time on their laptops, mobile devices and tablets while being connected to the Internet. This became a major driver for every small business entrepreneur to bounce back in business. What they require is an effective and efficient digital marketing which can be designed for today’s trends,” says Sarwar.
Webaly Branding was started in the middle of 2020 when the COVID was at it’s peak. This digital marketing company emerged as an efficient solution for businesses which are trying to come back into the growth path. “We aimed to deliver best in class digital marketing services in an affordable way,” Sarwar added.
On SMEStreet Outreach on Contemporary Digital Marketing Trends among MSMEs /Small Businesses
Commenting on the pointers that emerged in the SMEStreet Outreach Activity on Digital Marketing for MSMEs, he explained that the pointers which came out from SMEStreet Survey hold great relevance for every entrepreneur. life in 2021 and beyond will definitely go to be different from the previous years.
New Age Social Media Marketing
MSMEs and Startups have been working on social media marketing since the phenomenon of social media actually emerged as a viable option. But now, things have been changed and a lot of new dimensions have been added to the social media domain. Platforms like Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter and Short Video Apps have transformed into more evolved and engaged platforms. “Users of today are consuming a lot of digital content. Secondly, we are witnessing a great amount of user engagement on these social media platforms leading the user towards business transactions. This must be leveraged by entrepreneurs.
Digital Well-Being of Business
This includes the presentation of the website and the representation of business on the Internet. This is an old technique which will certainly going to stay in business even in 2021 and beyond. But, what has transformed in this area in the last few months or a year or so, is the fact that websites are expected to be more responsive. The social media presence of the business also expected to be integrated with the website. All of this and much more leads to digital well-being in business.
“Those days are gone when businesses were only supposed to build their websites and leave it for the users to come for business. Today, an integrated approach is needed to attract and invite customers to the website. Your business’ presence on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc are equally very important for the business.” Sarwar stated on acknowledging the importance of digital well-being of the business.
Communications & Collaboration Technologies
This factor has emerged from almost nothing in the last year. Due to COVID led lockdown, everything went in a remote working environment. This led to even business interaction taking place through video conferencing and live meetings. This leads to the forced adoption of platforms like Zoom, Google Hangouts, Microsoft teams etc. “Businesses of today have to have a clear understanding and policy towards video calling or collaboration tools. Earlier we have witnessed skype as an option to stay connected but today, every entrepreneur have to have capabilities and understanding for zoom video callings or Microsoft Teams or Google Hangouts etc,” He commented.
In the survey, over 82% of respondents have expressed that they would like to spend more resources and time on evolving their collaboration technologies and tools for their business. However, almost 55% of respondents have accepted that they have started using collaboration tools such as Zoom, Microsoft teams and Hangouts in the last six months or so.
This is very crucial as this was stared getting discussed but very less number of businesses have started adopting the benefits of video marketing. Today, after COVID, this is another emerging trend which is witnessing a huge upsurge. Earlier this capability was considered as an expensive overhead for business but now with several digital marketing tools, the affordability part is been well-taken care.
“Apart from the affordability aspect, Video marketing requires a serious amount of thinking. Video is the most powerful medium of marketing in terms of conveying or communicating any message. This could be a direct sales message, awareness building message, or user engagement message or even learning tutorial on any specific subject. All of this needs to be presented with a strategic value for the business,” Sarwar suggested.
There is no doubt that Digital data is extremely critical for every business. Considering data security trends this is one of the top five concerns for every small business entrepreneur. In digital marketing, MSMEs and startups often ignore the digital security aspect for their digital; content. This requires a lot of efforts and strategic initiatives to safeguard the digital security of business in 2021 and beyond.
A detailed report will be presented in this aspect shortly.
The above-mentioned pointers have been key parameters for a majority of entrepreneurs in the small business category. In this report, we tried to explain the survey findings along with expert comments. In the near future, we will present more such market research-driven reports which will highlight the exact contemporary trends in digital space influencing MSMEs and Startups. the main aim of this report is to highlight the valuable