​A new poll finds SMBs have specific goals in mind for their content and social marketing efforts, allocating funds toward each channel.

​For a long time, digital marketing seemed out of reach for brands with shallow pockets. America’s big names enjoyed the luxury of engaging with new and existing customers in innovative ways, but with demand comes supply, and costs associated with internet marketing have fallen. Now small- and medium-sized businesses have the resources they need to implement strategies​ ​that drive sales, awareness and engagement, proving the value and sudden necessity of web marketing.

A March 2013 poll of SMBs by Vocus and Inc. Magazine asked decision makers to rank select digital marketing goals on a scale of one to five in terms of importance. SMBs indicated that driving sales (4.45) and increasing brand awareness (4.36) were their prime online marketing objectives, followed by ambitions like improving customer engagement (4.26) and reaching new customer segments (4.26).

Separate studies suggest brands across the country are poised to embrace online marketing channels even further in 2013. A study from the Digital Marketing Depot found that 95 percent of surveyed agencies will expand their digital outreach programs over the next year. Approximately 50 percent will allocate funds toward content marketing, and 53 percent will focus their attention on social media marketing.

50 percent will allocate funds toward content marketing, and 53 percent will focus their attention on social media marketing.

The data from the Digital Marketing Depot also aligns with objectives noted by SMBs to Vocus and Inc. Magazine. The poll showed 86.6 percent of respondents will use web content to achieve their goals, 77.3 percent will embrace social media and 65.8 percent will create email content for the same gain.

What’s most interesting about comparing the insights about big agencies from the Digital Marketing Depot study and data from the Vocus poll is that both large enterprises and smaller organizations benefit from, and embrace the use of, the same outreach channels. However, SMBs lack the overall peoplepower to enhance or grow their marketing campaigns. The poll noted that SMBs most often assign no more than one full-time employee to digital outreach responsibilities.

With tactics like content creation and social marketing becoming standard practice among American companies, demand for top talent is at an all-time high. To continue to thrive on the ‘net and achieve objectives outlined by smaller marketing teams, companies must continue to funnel resources toward their employees, or outsource to services that can lend a creative hand.

Ted Karczewski is an Executive Communications Associate at Brafton. He works to develop his own voice and apply his passions to the evolving world of SEO and content marketing, but he doesn't shy away from writing for fun. After graduating from Suffolk University, Ted used his Communications degree to test out Sports Journalism before Marketing at Brafton.