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DemandForce’s CMO Patrick Barry suggested during his keynote address at SMB Digital Marketing in Chicago today that Intuits $434 Million acquisition of his company last year might be meant to connect every small business to any consumer via a single click. That’s the vision of digital marketing, he said.

Currently, there is a blurry world of SMB services. You’ve got applications, which are basically software tools that drive efficiencies, noted Barry. They are the last mile that must grab consumers attention spans, and there are thousands of workflow applications being used by SMBs, he said. Intuit services such as Quicken have six million customers. Others involve workflow data: schedule, availability of inventory, work status, revenue, transactions, history and quality.

You’ve also got networks, which drive services around the notion of community. Apps and network aend up being the key parameters. People talk a lot about cloud computing, but that’s just a method of distribution, said Barry. Services need to engage networks. You can no longer base your marketing on simply having a nice clean Yellow Pages ad.


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