Here’s a point of optimism for the marketer who doesn’t have Fortune 100 budgets at your disposal: everything big is getting small. If we look back at the digital marketing space in the last 10 years, we see that solutions first typically come out at the enterprise level. Before Facebook’s advertising system got the ability to do custom audiences or other advanced features, the Facebook exchange had them. For a while, the most complex AdWords solutions were available only to large media buyers. Not a day goes by when a new feature isn’t announced on a large social network to “select partners” and then the same feature becomes generally available a few weeks or months later.
The good news is that this puts tools and technologies which used to be the purview of only the largest audiences in the hands of everyone, especially in the world of advertising. While the big money will always have the advantage in general, and with new features in specific, if you are in an industry in which the big money is not a participant, such a small local business, then you have an ever-growing opportunity to beat your competitors handily. Imagine two stores competing in a relatively small town. Both have a website, both have a Facebook page, but only one of them is using custom audiences and retargeting. Who do you think will win?
Winning at the biggest corporate levels is and likely always will be a matter of budget and execution, but at the smaller levels, knowledge your competitors don’t have can be enough to push you over the victory line. If you’re a small business owner, set up a Flipboard, Zite, Currents, Facebook Paper, or Feedly account, find the marketing section, and start reading. Get caught up, and then go beyond your competitors.
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