San Francisco Small Businesses Hungry for Digital Marketing Knowledge

Google data from 2011 found that consumers consult 10.7 different sources when making purchase decisions, with digital outlets becoming increasingly more influential. Almost five years later, online tools have not only grown in number, but in importance, leaving small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) the challenge of navigating this fragmented digital landscape.

Today at LSA Bootcamp in San Francisco, experts from Google, YP, Yelp, Constant Contact, Bing and more are educating an audience of SMBs about digital marketing. Writing down notes and tips, asking questions and networking with their peers and presenters, these SMBs are expressing a strong desire to learn.

“With SEO and online marketing and social media you have to constantly stay up to date on the trends, and they’re constantly changing,” said Codee Andreoli of Global Gourmet Catering in San Francisco. “I’m excited to walk away with some new information and knowledge.”

San Francisco marks the sixth LSA Bootcamp event, all of which have revealed an appetite among these businesses for digital marketing tips and information. Despite the various digital marketing resources available online, attendees enjoy the opportunity to meet face-to-face with the experts in attendance.

“I do a lot of my own research, but on occasions where there are opportunities like this I definitely go to them to learn everything I can,” said Codee.

Joey Blaszczyk of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce reiterated the importance of in-person events for SMBs to learn. He said that these kind of events are most beneficial for small businesses owners because they offer an opportunity to network and grow their business.

“It’s great to see the attendance,” said Joey. “I think that better speaks to the interest or need to learn more.”

Jeff Biesman of YP has been speaking at the LSA Bootcamp events for the past year, leading a session alongside Google around developing a digital marketing strategy. He said that what he hears most from these businesses is that they are confused and frustrated with digital marketing.

Specifically, LSA survey data has consistently shown that SMBs are very interested in learning about topics such as websites, social media and SEO. Anecdotally, at these events Jeff often gets questions around websites and getting “mobile-friendly” which YP data shows that almost half of San Francisco SMBs aren’t.

The LSA Bootcamp tour will continue this year, making stops in Denver, Detroit and Chicago. In addition, for the SMBs who are unable to attend an LSA Bootcamp event, the LSA has developed which is a new resource to help small businesses learn about digital marketing.

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