SMB Data Point of the Week: SMBs with Middle Child Syndrome

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In BIA/Kelsey’s Local Commerce Monitor survey of small and medium businesses, we divided SMBS into three groups: 1 employee (very small businesses), 2 to 9 employees (small businesses) and 10 to 99 employees (medium businesses). When comparing the SMBs in these three groups, it becomes apparent that the SMBs in the 2 to 9 employees bracket suffer from middle child syndrome. Middle children often feel left out and invisible compared to their older (“the leader”) and younger (“the baby”) siblings.

SMBs in the 2 to 9 employees bracket spend more on advertising and promotion than their smaller 1 employee SMB siblings, but not nearly as much as their bigger 10-99 employees SMB siblings. Like their smaller siblings, these middle child SMBs are heavily oriented to digital media in general and social media in particular, due to the lower price points of these media. But, like their bigger siblings, they are also users of traditional media, particularly direct mail, directories, and newspapers.

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BIA/Kelsey’s LCM, Wave 19 reports can be purchased a la carte in the new BIA/Kelsey eStoreOur LCM reports look at where particular SMBs (broken out by size, vertical, etc.) spend the most, as well as the top channels for marketing and promotion.

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