Last week, the Yellow Pages Group hosted their first session in a 3-part seminar series aimed at helping Canadian small businesses to learn about the rapidly changing consumer landscape and discover what online marketing tools and tactics can help them to maximize their online presence. The first seminar was held in Toronto, with two more events coming up in Vancouver on May 18th and Montreal on June 16th.
I spoke with Tracy Smith, VP, Performance Marketing & Go-to-Market at the Yellow Pages Group who explained to me why the company has developed the seminar series.
Smith says that the Yellow Pages Group aims “to be a catalyst to help get more small and medium sized businesses online.” In his presentation, Smith spoke to the Toronto audience about different ways that SMEs can generate valuable sales leads and build solid relationships with customers via online marketing tools.
He believes that the consumer landscape is changing rapidly and that it’s not uncommon for SMEs to feel overwhelmed by all of the tools and options that they now have at their disposal. For example, online marketing tactics like mobile search and daily deals (i.e. Groupon and WagJag) didn’t exist 12 to 18 months ago as viable advertising channels.
Now, Smith says that many of the Yellow Pages Group customers are considering advertising on these channels. He recommends that small business owners simply start testing and trying out these new channels to see what will work best for them.
According to Smith, “you do not necessarily need to start-out by spending $500-$1000 per month on search marketing campaigns.” He says that some customers begin with a “$50 to $100 test campaign” to simply familiarize themselves with the tools and then add more to their budgets as they grow their knowledge of what works and what doesn’t.
The Yellow Pages Group seminars are broken out into three key areas:
- How the consumer landscape is changing
- The fundamentals of search marketing
- How to make sure your customers find you