A Messaging Framework

Continuing my look at activating a breadth market, here is the messaging framework for the Small Business Owner Manager (SBOM).  It examines the key information technology messages and how you might carry those messages to the business owner.

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I ought to untangle some of the TLAs

  • BCC British Chamber of Commerce
  • FSB Federation of Small Business
  • bCentral and MS.com  Microsoft web sites
  • LOB Line of Business articles and magazines
  • VSR vertical special interest media

The point is the right message needs to be in the right place.

Activating a breadth market

I have been asked to write something on the principles of activating a breadth market in the UK.  A breadth market is one where there is clearly  no possibility of visiting all the customer personally, imagine trying to visit all the Small Business Owners in the UK, there are about 4 Million of them; I define that as a breath market.

The Small Business Owner Manager (SBOM) is an interesting market, extremely diverse, some growing fast, some lifestyle, across all industries and sectors, and yet there are some elements they all have in common.  They are relatively easy to segment by looking at the role of the SBOM, they are likely to be the one making the purchase decisions and therefore they are the one to influence.

Neil Churchill segmented Small Businesses back in the 80’s, long before personal computers came along, it seems like a good place to start.  His article in the HBR  Stages of Growth and Strategy identified that in each stage of growth the business under goes a number of changes that lead to a different focus, the need for formal systems and strategies changes at each stage. (HBR 1983).

It struck me that if you were going to sell to the SBOM then these stages are important.

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The “Business and Owner and relationship to business” defines the position and effort of the SBOM (White Circle) in the overall business (Blue Circle).  So the SBOM starts within the business and later stands to one side.    We all know people like that.

So for the Small Business market this is the place to start.  In my next article I will look at the way in which SBOM look for advice and guidance.