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Home and Trade SMBs Still Going Strong With Traditional Media

by | Feb 2, 2016 | BIA, Blog, Newspapers, SAM, SMBs, Verticals

Home and Trade Services* SMBs use an average of 6 different channels for advertising, including print yellow pages, newspapers, direct mail and community sponsorships. While Facebook was the most popular channel used, print yellow pages, newspapers, direct mail and community sponsorship were also extremely popular (top ten used). Additionally their spend of their overall budget on traditional media was high when compared to other verticals in our Local Commerce Monitor™, Wave 19, survey of small-and-medium businesses.  When looking at average budget for traditional media, we examined SMBs in two distinct groups, Core and Plus:

Core SMBs are those SMBs that spend less than $25K annual on advertising. Core Home/Trade SMBs budget 17% to print Yellow Pages and nearly a quarter went to other traditional media, which includes newspaper and direct mail.

Plus Spender SMBs are those SMBs that spend more than $25K annually on advertising. Plus Spender Home/Trade SMBs budget  5% to  print Yellow Pages and 20% to other traditional media.

While SMBs in the Home and Trade Services continue to utilize traditional media, their budget allocation for digital is increasing. On average, SMBs in the Home and Trade Services vertical allocated 25.5% of their advertising budget to digital in the last 12 months. Over the next 12 months, they report plans to increase it to 30.6%.

This is also evident in Media Ad View Plus (MAV+), BIA/Kelsey’s forecast of advertising dollars across local markets and nationwide, which shows that General Services (the vertical that includes Home and Trade Services) spends heavily on traditional media for advertising and promotion. That reliance is expected to continue to lessen over the next few years, with digital taking a larger piece of the pie.

However, when it comes to their return on investment (ROI), more Home and Trade Services SMBs reported a higher return from digital properties like their website and social media pages than traditional channels with the exception of print coupons and direct mail.

Given the vertical’s heavy reliance on traditional media and their need for leads, there’s an opportunity for traditional media players to bundle digital media to their offerings. Local media players, especially in the traditional channels, have an opportunity to continue to serve their Home and Trade Services SMBs through offering lead generating products and campaigns, in both traditional and digital channels.

Clients of the BIA/Kelsey Advisory Services should have received an email with a link to the full Home and Trade Services vertical report. Anyone interested in purchasing the report can find it in our store under Small Business Research Reports.


*Home and Trade Services vertical includes trades (plumber, HVAC, electrician, etc.), lawn care/landscaping, property management/HOA, and construction or contracting.