Four in five Australian small businesses see value in marketing but only 34 per cent are prioritising funds in their budget for it, according to Intuit, the software firm responsible for QuickBooks.

New Intuit research found marketing is not being prioritised by small businesses and they are instead relying on word of mouth.

Marketing also falls down the list of priorities for Australian SMBs when financial constraints hit, with day to day operations taking precedent. Nearly half (46 per cent) of respondents said they face budgetary constraints that force them to shift their spend to other areas of their business.

However, that can be a “trap”, Intuit says, because marketing can drive help cashflow.

“It’s concerning that so many small business owners in Australia are sacrificing opportunities to grow their business profile as a consequence of having to spend on other priorities,” says Natira Drayton, Country Manager, Intuit Australia.

“This is a classic trap for small businesses. While day-to-day operational demands can make finding the time and money to invest in marketing difficult, it’s hard to keep cash flow healthy and achieve your business’s potential without it.”

The Intuit study, conducted by Lightspeed Research, surveyed just over 500 small business owners in Australia and found that 80 per cent of small business operators see marketing as a valuable tool.

The research showed SMBs view the website as the most valuable marketing channel (47 per cent of respondents) followed by social media (42 per cent), email marketing (25 per cent), and digital marketing (24 per cent)

The value of marketing to SMBs, according to the study is: a way to grow their customer database (39 per cent), bring in new business leads (42per cent) and achieve direct sales (38 per cent).

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