What SMB Hiring Habits Reveal

Anyone marketing to the small and midsized business (SMB) market wants to understand how decisions are made. They also want to know who SMBs are buying from and what they want to buy.

In Bredin’s recent research with 500 principals of U.S. SMBs, we uncovered some habits and preferences that matter to anyone marketing to SMBs.

SMBs are very involved

An astonishing 55% of principals at companies with 100-500 employees answer “me” when asked who makes hiring decisions. We see a similar level of involvement when we survey SMBs about technology purchase decision-making, choosing a payroll company and other purchasing decisions. While these business owners may delegate the collection of resumes, quotes and product specs, they are still the ones to choose between purchase options or candidates. It’s essential to enable their line of business managers to make a business case to the principal.

Opportunity exists beyond the resume

In a hiring resource, SMBs want “to-be-expected” features like detailed candidate listings, background checks, salary recommendations and candidate tracking. Where it gets interesting for the rest of us is that they also want help with payroll, health care and retirement plans.
Companies in business for two years or less lead the pack in interest in payroll. The net? SMBs are very interested in bundled services.

Who they work with to hire

A go-to tactic for marketing to SMBs is to partner with other marketers to offer a broader suite of offerings or access each others’ customers. If you are considering a partnership, take a look at who SMBs turn to for hiring help. Be sure to consider the size of your target SMB when you are looking for a hiring company partner, since there is tremendous variation between businesses of different sizes.

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About Bredin

Bredin was founded in 1991 by America's foremost small business expert, author and syndicated columnist Alice Bredin. From its beginning, Bredin was designed to be a breed apart: 50% research consultancy, 50% creative agency, 100% focused on SMB. Based in Somerville, Mass., Bredin helps Fortune 500 companies understand, reach and retain SMB customers through timely, targeted research and award-winning marketing programs.