Weekly News: 30 Millions SMBs, The Subscription Model, Successful SMB SaaS Products

Here is this week’s roundup of the top news items related to local marketing and advertising, local media, technology, local commerce, consumer behavior and more.

Insight & Commentary

30 Million SMBs: How Many Are Your Potential Customers? (May 6, 2019)
LSA Insider: “This week is national small business week. In honor of that, here are a few statistics about small businesses and what they represent in the roughly $20 trillion US economy.”

Will SaaS Swallow Everything? (May 7, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Some of us may remember eagerly waiting for the current issue of Sports Illustrated or People as part of a monthly subscription. Others may look back to a time when kids would knock on doors to peddle magazines to win prizes or support school trips. Now we have subscriptions for virtually everything, from the highly tangible (Blue Apron meal kits) to the virtual (cloud storage, Office365, WiFi, etc.). So why has the subscription model become so much a part of our lives?”

Does Google’s Hint at Pay-to-Play for GMB Put The Channel at Risk? (May 6, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Google recently sent Google My Business users a survey about charging for services and features, among other topics. While the survey isn’t necessarily indicative of any sudden changes, it points to Google’s willingness to tinker with the historically free model. A subscription model would have far-reaching effects on Google itself as well as the digital advertising world.”

Strategy & Tactics

Here’s What SaaS Companies are Doing to Increase Retention (May 8, 2019)
LSA Insider: “According to the US Small Business Administration’s 2018 Small Business Profile, there are 30.2 million SMBs in the US. A number this high provides a massive market opportunity for SaaS companies who sell their services to these business, but that doesn’t mean the road to get there isn’t without common challenges.”

95% of New Products Fail: Successful SMB SaaS Products Must Solve Real-World Problems (May 6, 2019)
LSA Insider: “The world is constantly being flooded with new products of all shapes and sizes. Whether it’s a non-stick pan, a workout machine or a new technology, the success of these products is, in many cases, determined long before their launch.”

Brands’ cause marketing efforts fail to break through with Gen Z, report says (May 9, 2019)
Marketing Dive: “Two-thirds of Gen Z consumers said their impression of a brand is positively impacted by its association with a social cause and 58% report such an association could spur a purchase, according to a new study from consulting firm DoSomething Strategic.”

Stats & Studies

The Death of the SMB Website Has Been Greatly Exaggerated (May 7, 2019)
LSA Insider: “A number of people in the local SEO community have argued that GMB (and Facebook) make the SMB website a thing of the past — except perhaps as a “data hub.” And while it’s true that Google, Facebook, Yelp and other consumer destinations are typically the first consumer point of contact with small businesses, a new survey from BrightLocal shows that SMB websites are far from irrelevant.”

Key local stats every marketer needs to know (May 6, 2019)
Search Engine Land: “Local is the Rodney Dangerfield of digital marketing; it simply doesn’t get the respect it deserves. But when we look at the totality of the data, it becomes clear that the majority of brands and retailers should be focusing a great deal more energy and effort on local digital marketing.”

Survey: More consumers trust accuracy of SMB websites over Google My Business (May 3, 2019)
Search Engine Land: “In the face of Google My Business growth small business websites are increasingly irrelevant — argue some local SEOs. However, a new consumer survey from BrightLocal contradicts that thinking and makes the case that SMB websites are still a critical part of small business marketing.”

Industry News

Facebook Offers New SMB Ad Tools, Says 90 Million Now on Platform (May 8, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Earlier this week Facebook announced a number of new tools and features for small businesses (SMBs). The company is launching automated ads, online appointments, new video editing tools and more SMB training courses. It also said there are more than 90 million small businesses on Facebook.”

Google: Local Campaigns Coming Soon to SMB Advertisers (May 9, 2019)
LSA Insider: “This week Google held its massive developer conference (Google I/O). Next week is Google’s annual event dedicated specifically to its ad products: Google Marketing Live. Google teased the event in a blog post, which focused on Local campaigns.”

Voice of the Customer: Hear from SMBs Live at LOCALOGY ENGAGE (May 2, 2019)
LSA Insider: “LSA’s upcoming Localogy Engage: SaaS SMB event (June 3 – 4, Washington DC) is unique among industry conferences. Most gatherings about SaaS or SMB advertiser acquisition and retention deal in vicarious abstractions — you hear about SMBs, not from them. At Engage, you’ll hear SMBs tell their own stories.”

Member News

Vendasta welcomes new CFO Richard Cheung (May 8, 2019)
Vendasta: “Cheung is a seasoned C-level executive with broad financial and operational experience in a range of high-growth, venture-funded, and early stage companies through to NASDAQ listed public companies.”

Google Tests New Type Of Shoppable Ad (May 3, 2019)
MediaPost: “Google began testing “shoppable ads” in Image Search last March, which allows advertisers to highlight products in ads. A few brands, such as Kate Spade, have dabbled in what the search engine called a “shoppable ad” unit on YouTube.”

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