This article is for business owners who want to start the New Year off right by making use of industry trends and predictions. Keep an eye on these trends and predictions for small and mid-size businesses (SMEs) this year.
The people at SME 2022 think that 2023 will be a better year. The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t over for US companies, but they are still hopeful because vaccines are being given out. Since the beginning of last year, the focus has been on pandemics. However, other trends and business owners still need to be watched.
Let’s talk to experts in finance, marketing, technology, and human resources to find out what small businesses can expect in 2023 and how these changes can be used to their advantage.Changes in the financial world
The COVID-19 lending program is important, but not enough on its own. To meet the capital needs of business owners in 2023, business owners will also need to find other ways to get money.
Many small businesses get help from check protection programs.
COVID 19 has affected the cash reserves of many companies. After their initial closure, many states have reopened, but some have put back in place restrictions, which raises new concerns about cash flow and the survival of SMEs.
The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which was set up last year under the Coronavirus Assistance, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, got more money from the latest $900 billion stimulus package.
Alternative funding sources fill in the gaps in funding.
For many other business owners, borrowing is not an option, especially if they lost a lot of money during the COVID-19 pandemic. In these situations, finding another way to get money is very important. Alternative lenders or investors can help a lot of small business owners get the money they need.
Alternative sources are very important to the health of a business. Some of the other ways to get money are through grants, FinTech, Venture Capital, Angel Investors, Peer-to-Peer Lending, Crowd-funding, and so on. Since the COVID-19 Pandemic is making the balance sheet worse, it’s actual capital. These are important because many companies that need them can’t meet the requirements of traditional funding sources.
Trends in marketing:
As traditional marketing and public relations are re-done in 2023, spending on digital marketing may go up.
Since the biggest social media platforms have billions of users, it’s not surprising that social media is becoming a bigger marketing target. In 2023, this fast growth won’t stop. Big insurance and finance companies say that by 2023, the amount spent on advertising on social media will go up by up to 20%, to a total of $105 billion. That’s almost twice as much as the $54.4 billion that was spent on ads on social media in 2022.
“Everyone has been forced to move away from traditional in-store marketing,” said Ari Zoldan, CEO of Quantum Media Group. They have been forced to go digital, and many people think this is a good thing. In 2023, more money will be spent on digital marketing, Zoldan said.
As social media advertising grows in popularity, it is also getting harder to stand out. SMEs need to use a natural, multi-channel approach to raise brand and audience awareness. Advertising can lead to organic growth, but SMEs will compete with their competitors for social media growth if an organic method, like content marketing, can lead to a better return on investment. You should try not to get caught.
Paid placement ads will be used more and more in regular media.
From 2019 to 2022, the amount of money spent on paid placement ads in the US went from $4.75 billion to $11.24 billion. Zoldan said that this trend won’t last until 2023. He also said that the line between sponsored and unsponsored content is likely to become less clear because viewers prefer real content to ads.
“Paid placements are very in-depth and focused on videos. It can be hard to tell the difference between what you paid and what you made. Zoldan also said that this is a risky move for many news organizations and can hurt their credibility.
Traditional press releases have a lower return on investment (ROI) than multimedia.
Zoldan says that the press release doesn’t work as well because it’s hard to get the media to cover it. Brands don’t have to send text-based press releases to the media in the hopes that they will be published. Instead, they can publish press releases inside and make video announcements about what’s going on with the company.
“Press releases are a thing of the past,” said Zoldan. If putting out a press release today isn’t worth much, ” Zoldan said, adding that if a press release is needed, it works best if it’s interactive or a video.
What’s New in Tech?
SMEs are driving the adoption of new technology, and as the COVID-19 pandemic goes on through 2023, AR and VR will do well.
Augmented reality is different from virtual reality.
Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) have been popular for a while, but 2023 could be the year that businesses start to use them in new ways. The best thing about this trend is that it may be started by small businesses.
Joe Apfelbaum, founder and CEO of a well-known B2B marketing firm, said, “Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality let us experience the world in different ways, which is very powerful, especially during a pandemic.” They can make trade show booths that are cheap and offer VR and AR experiences.
Small businesses should use AR and VR at a high level to get people excited and make the market more competitive.
AI and big data drive personalization.
Businesses also can’t ignore technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics.These two technologies work well together to let businesses not only collect a lot of data, but also use machine learning to figure out what that data means. Companies can use the information they learn this way to better plan their marketing campaigns and find ways to make their internal processes more efficient.
Apfelbaum says, “Big data gives us a great chance to make a high level of customization today.” “We can predict what our customers want and use that information to create a personalized user experience,” said Apfelbaum. “AI can contextualize more than just business data.”
In an interview with Business News Daily, Apfelbaum said, “For example, this call is being transcribed by AI.” If you say “$50,” the amount of money we’re talking about will appear on its own.
Apfelbaum said that depending on your business and what you want to do, AI and automation can be used in a very cost-effective way. “Getting a personal business license is easy because there are so many resources online and in stores.”
SMEs are the ones who drive the use of new technologies.
People often think that this is a big company for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Apfelbaum, on the other hand, said that the opposite was true.
He said that if you have a small business and a new technology comes out, you can use it right away. Large companies have to test and test again and again. After testing and setting things up, they are spending a lot of money and won’t have to change anything else.
As technology changes, you need to adapt. SMEs have an advantage because they are able to do this. So, by 2023, SMEs will be the ones pushing for more people to use technologies like AR/VR and machine learning.
Human Resources (HR) Trends
Aaron Holt, a labor and employment law attorney at Kozen O’Connor, said that replacing the White House Guard could have a big impact on human resources. This can cause policy changes that affect all kinds of businesses.
The minimum wage across the country will go up.
The federal minimum wage hasn’t gone up in more than a decade, and Biden’s campaign platform included a big increase.
“It’s between $8 and $9 right now, and it hasn’t changed in about 12 years,” says Holt, the book’s author. The Biden administration wants to raise the minimum wage to $15, which is a big jump. “I’m not sure if they’ll be able to get this raise, but I hope the minimum wage will go up in some way.”
In the wake of the pandemic, more people than ever want paid family and medical leave. As required by the Family and First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), the federal government has recently added unpaid leave to the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Holt said that it could quickly turn into a paid layoff, especially if the Democrats run the Senate.
From what the Biden administration has said, it sounds like there will be a lot of new paid layoffs. During COVID-19, Biden has said a lot about this. Hold added, “That’s not right for all businesses, no matter how big they are.”
OSHA will do more to enforce rules about pandemics.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) may not have said much to many small businesses in the past year, but that could change in 2023. Holt said that small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) need to make sure they have the security measures they need to get ready for more surveillance.
“During the epidemic, OSHA didn’t do much to enforce stricter enforcement measures, do active investigations, or make sure that safety procedures related to the pandemic were followed,” Holt said. I think Biden’s staff will fix that. I think that when it comes to pandemic restrictions, OSHA will see much stronger guidance and stricter enforcement at both the federal and state levels.
How can small and medium-sized businesses make sure they are ready to pass a compliance audit as OSHA steps up its monitoring and enforcement?
“The most important thing you can do is keep an eye on the CDC’s advice on how businesses can protect themselves, their employees, and their customers,” Holt said. Also, make sure you know the state and local rules. Businesses have to follow any bans or restrictions put in place by county or state officials, which are called ordinances. If not, there are usually some clear consequences.”
The COVID-19 vaccination policy is what SMEs need.
As the COVID-19 vaccine becomes more widely available, organizations need policies for how to handle their immunization needs. Holt said that people who own businesses should start making plans right away. Talk to an attorney about your policy to make sure it follows all local, state, and federal rules.
“As more people get vaccinated, employers will have to decide how to deal with vaccines in the workplace.” Is there something in particular they want? Do you have any suggestions?” “It’s important for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) without a human resources department to make and improve these policies and practices to make sure they match the operational needs of the business.”