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Be Thrifty, But Be Smart About It

I think in any business, everyone’s trying to cut the costs where they can. The economy’s hit people pretty hard- but you have to remember that with this sort of economic waxing and waning comes new attacks on businesses, new challenges and threats to your security- and most business aren’t doing all they should be to protect themselves or their customers from potential dangers when using the Internet. This is one area you absolutely cannot afford to cut corners in, you just can’t. In a new report from National Cyber Security Alliance and Symantec it was found that most small business owners just aren’t doing all they can in this regard. Trying to cut costs may be hurting your business more than you realize.

What’s this got to do with marketing? Everything. Let me tell you, the thing that you find when dealing with online marketing campaigns and any sort of online business, be that using it to advertise or even in sales- if your customers don’t feel secure about your website, your online security- they won’t be wanting to put their information out there. They won’t want to purchase from you. You don’t seem credible or trustworthy. So, this is a very important and often overlooked aspect of marketing that I think deserves a nod.

The 2009 National Small Business Cybersecurity Study showed that of nearly 1,500 small business owners surveyed, a whopping 65 percent viewed the internet as an important asset to their business. The details came out as follows:
•20 percent have intellectual property and other sensitive corporate content online
•65 percent store customer data
•33 percent store credit card information
•43 percent store financial records
But with all of this sensitive data out there, on the whole, these small businesses just weren’t keeping on top of Internet security.

According to this same survey, only 28 percent of all US small businesses are utilizing more formal Internet security practices and only 35 percent have any sort of training for employee safety and security on the Internet. That’s bad. These aren’t the sort of numbers that instill a sense of confidence and trust in a business- and as such, this is something that for any company doing business online should have a focus on. Even if its simply email security measures, showing on your website that you care about your customers’ security and privacy is important, that much is clear. Unfortunately, many aren’t even clear on what measures need to be implemented and how that applies to their online marketing campaigns- well, look at it this way. Even from just an information gathering standpoint- if you have two websites of interest, one has a disclaimer about not sharing private information, the other does not, who are you more likely to send your request for information? Exactly. And it goes much larger scale when you get into actual financial information such as online purchases, so this is something you do need to consider a marketing essential.