IAB tool launched to ‘power-up’ SME advertising

The industry body for digital advertising has launched an online tool to help small businesses use digital advertising and maximise the value they get from it.

Pulling together IAB UK research and insight as well as expert advice from more than 30 members, the tool has been developed in response to SMEs’ call for more accessible, jargon-free advice on how to best use digital channels, particularly in light of the ongoing pandemic and its economic impact.

IAB UK’s ‘Powering Up’ research was conducted earlier this year found that, while the majority of small businesses value digital advertising, 40 per cent aren’t using it at all and, among those who do, more help is needed to leverage different channels effectively.

In particular, SMEs wanted objective and easy-to-understand guidance curated by a single objective source.

this tool is essentially a one-stop-shop to help small businesses get the most out of digital

The tool asks small business owners and marketers to input a range of information about their objectives to give them a bespoke advice – results cater for a range of budget levels between £500 and £5 million.

Content includes planning advice from Mindshare and channel-specific guides on how to get started in everything from social media advertising to digital out-of-home, plus advice on implementing a digital measurement strategy, understanding programmatic advertising, and what makes for an effective digital ad campaign.

Throughout, there are case studies to illustrate how different channels and strategies are delivering for small businesses.

CEO Jon Mew said: “We all know that digital advertising can be complicated, especially if you aren’t familiar with the various channels and opportunities available. In response to SMEs’ call for more accessible and straightforward advice, this tool is essentially a one-stop-shop to help small businesses get the most out of digital.

“SMEs are crucial to our national economy and, as they deal with the acute impact of COVID-19, we know that digital advertising can play an important role in helping them navigate the fallout and recover.

“Our job is to now make sure that relevant companies know this resource exists so that they can draw on the expertise on offer.”

Craig Beaumont, Chief of External Affairs at Federation of Small Businesses, said: “As the voice for small businesses and the self-employed, we know from FSB members up and down the UK that there is real appetite for online advertising, even during COVID-19.”

He reiterated that newspaper promotional campaigns have “demonstrated the enthusiasm for digital advertising from more than a thousand small businesses, so we welcome this easy-to-use new tool created by the IAB that will provide tailored guidance to help SMEs advertise for the first time, or take their current digital advertising to the next level”.