Small businesses' marketing budgets are expected to take off in coming months as economic conditions improve and owners seek to increase their promotional strategies.
But at the helm of the rejuvenated marketing industry is the need to balance traditional methods with recent innovations such as social media and mobile advertising. More importantly, today's marketing campaigns are about starting and maintaining a conversation with customers and prospective clients.
With this in mind, Forbes magazine contributor Scott Goodson recommends a new phenomenon called "cultural movement" marketing, which essentially refers to the mobilization of audiences by means of social or cultural benefit. In other words, movement marketing is a push to engage consumers through concerns that they may already share – be they technological, political, environmental or geographical.
"It doesn't center on the products," Goodson writes. "It's an authentic, genuine sharing of passions between a brand and a customer. Smart brands, like Apple, are already aware of just how powerful this can be and have already radically altered their marketing approach."
Print strategies can help toward this end as well, especially considering how persistent the channel is – a recent Capital One survey found 62 percent of small businessses were invested in print advertising in the first quarter of 2011.