How many small business owners have received telemarketing calls from marketing companies making spurious claims about a guaranteed ranking on Google? The SMB-digital marketing services arena is full of noise with almost limited transparency.
Business owners receive a barrage of calls per month soliciting their marketing dollars. The process of “vetting” these firms is very difficult; and finding a company that can be trusted is near the top of the list of challenges.
Top SMB challenges in finding a marketing service provider (multiple responses permitted)
Source: Thrive Analytics, November 2016. N=200 SMBs
LSA has decided to enter the market with a new certification program that seeks to point SMBs to ethical marketing firms. This isn’t a guarantee of performance. Rather it signifies that certified companies have agreed to abide by a set of guidelines and ethical business practices surrounding:
- Sales practices and representations made to prospective clients
- Service standards and accountability
- Hiring and training practices
- Service agreements and contracts
- Security and privacy of information
This program was developed over a roughly two-year period with a great deal of consultation with key constituencies. LSA also surveyed small business owners, which supported the idea: 80% said that such a certification would impact their choice of a marketing partner.
Our hope and belief is that over time the certified firms will rise above the noise and deliver genuinely better service to SMBs. Learn more or apply here.