6 Key Small Business Marketing Trends for 2024

There are lots of exciting things on the horizon for 2024 and in our blog we wanted to share what we consider our 6 top small business marketing trends for 2024. I was really fortunate in October this year to attend a webinar run by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) at Henley Business School, that not only shared some of their latest research on the forthcoming trends in the world of marketing, but we also heard from some amazing industry leading speakers. Combining the insight gathered from this day with what we are seeing in the world of marketing on a day to day basis, below we summarise our thoughts on the trends for the year ahead:

1. The Growth of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Tech

It is no secret that Artificial Intelligence (AI) has grown at an incredible rate in 2023. One of the biggest challenges we are facing is to understand how we can use this new technology effectively within the world of marketing. In 2024 we can expect to see more marketing tools like Chatbots, voice search optimisation and predictive analysis, to help use data to further predict client behaviour, become even more widely used. Whilst many of these technological advancements are really exciting, it is important that marketers and business leaders do not rely completely on this new technology, producing bland and boring content.

2. Sustainable Marketing and the Environment

Quite rightly as sustainability continues to be a big focus for many organisations, it is key that the marketing industry also adapts their approach accordingly. A sustainable marketing approach must look at ways of integrating environmentally responsible practices into the implementation of campaigns eg: using recyclable paper, reducing carbon emissions, etc. The shift towards sustainability is changing the relationship between customers and brands. Customers are increasingly drawn to brands that demonstrate genuine environmental practices, B Corp registered organisations are a great example of this. In a recent article by Absolute, they quote that 92% of consumers trust brands that are socially responsible or eco-friendly and 81% prefer eco-friendly marketing. Not only is it ethically the right approach to be taking, but it is being driven by what is important to our customers.

3. Connection and Community

Possibly as a direct reaction to COVID plus evolving the sense of loyalty and personalisation, connection and community is going to become increasingly important in 2024. Customers wish to feel like they are part of something and important to brands, not just sent on an automated journey with everyone else. Some of the big considerations for businesses of all sizes, but in particular the small business owner, is how we can manage and leverage this approach. Creating an engaging community can be time consuming, so it will be important to assess how to keep the value to the customer, whilst at the same time being mindful of the business objectives.

4. Limited Budgets

Budgets continue to be a challenge for businesses of all sizes. As the rising costs of living continue to escalate small business owners in particular will continue to review the efficiencies of their investments. Luckily in today’s digital marketing world many of the tools that we use on a day to day basis can provide us with clear guidance on if the campaigns or messages we share have been well received by our audiences. It is important when things get tighter we continue to promote our businesses, keeping forefront of our consumers’ minds.

5. Continue to be customer centric

Personalisation and putting the customer at the heart of everything will continue to be important. In a world where large organisations wish to automate and streamline everything with the intention of making things easier, quicker and more cost effective, there is an opportunity for small businesses to add that personal touch. There is nothing more frustrating than wanting to speak to someone with a query and not being able to, banks are a great example of this, with many branches now closed in many high streets. The traditional online banks that still provide the option of speaking to a person will undoubtably win in the long run. As a small business owner, providing that personal touch is a real opportunity and point of difference. By not only making yourself available for clients the personalisation in our automated tools and systems will continue to be key.

6. Short Form Video

This trend has been growing over recent years. With the rise and introduction of tools across the social media channels, like reels and lives this is now a key part of your marketing media mix. Not all of us (myself included), enjoy this. But knowing and understanding what our customers want and how they want to be communicated with, will help to drive greater engagement as we head into the new year.

There is often such a negative feeling from major news sources, that as a wrap up to our blog I wanted to share an article from Positive News about what went right in 2023. It is good to see that the end of COVID, positive strides in medicine and the environment are some key things shining through, click here to read the full article.

If you would like some help in building your marketing approach for 2024 please get in touch to arrange a no obligation discovery call.

Sophie Comas

A highly successful self-motivated and results driven, senior marketing professional. My passion lies within developing and delivering marketing solutions which make a difference in today's complex digital market place. A marketeer with a strong academic background and broad ranging level of experience working with small businesses and in the travel and hospitality sector, across the Thames Valley, I love a challenge!

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