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Will the National Broadband Network mean Boom or Bust for your Small Business?

9 December 2011 | Maria Anderson | No Comments

If your small business is prepared to take advantage of the benefits of the NBN, it could be set to boom. In fact, the NBN business plan states that the network is specifically designed to benefit small and medium businesses.*

Is your business prepared to benefit?

If you don’t take the time now to strategically plan for the changes the NBN will bring to consumer behaviour, marketing opportunities and business design, your business could be left behind in the pre-NBN dust. If you are proactive and prepared though, according to Jaye Radisich, CEO of the Council of Small Business of Australia (COSBOA), “the possibilities for what small businesses will be able to deliver with high-speed broadband are mind-blowing!”

The NBN will open up countless opportunities for small businesses in some specific industries. The combination of high-speed broadband and an ageing population, for example, will support an explosion of e-health and online health services. Digital communication options like videoconferencing will be in hot demand; online education and YouTube video sharing will open global markets to previously local small businesses; and online entertainment options like high definition video will be available to everyone.

Don’t miss out on the opportunity for your small business to profit from the NBN. Learn more about the NBN at www.nbn.gov.au, and start preparing for your digital future now by considering these questions:

How will you change the way you operate?

Does your business model include using technologies like Skype, webinars and YouTube videos to reach your customers? Are you providing access to your products and services through online channels? Are you catering to customers who want to interact with your business online, outside of traditional operating hours? Businesses that seize the online communication opportunities of the NBN will profit from being able to reach wider markets and provide more targeted products and services using fewer resources.

One example that illustrates the need for businesses to adapt their operational styles for the digital age is bookstores. Amazon is already selling more electronic book downloads than print books. This trend is set to continue, and it means bookstores will need to change their models to remain viable and competitive. Small and medium sized bookstores may have to operate cafes or coffee shops, run book clubs or specialise in niche areas and add the benefit of instore experts and resources.

How will you change your physical structure?

Have you considered de-centralising your operations or scaling down the bricks and mortar side of your business? The NBN will mean increased importance of your online presence. In many cases, it will allow businesses to scale back on their physical infrastructure, save money by sharing offices and resources and sometimes even eliminate the need for a fixed business location.

Knowledge-based business such as accountants, lawyers, marketers and architects will have the opportunity to decrease their expenses and increase their profits by opting for combinations of home office based services, shared office services and online communications like Skype and videoconferencing.

How will you change the way you market?

Are you talking to your customers directly on Facebook or Twitter? Are you considering the impact of social media on word-of-mouth marketing? Are you monitoring the online behaviour of your customers and using online channels to test new products and services? Fast, easy online access for all will change one-way marketing into 2-way conversations; it will mean word-of-mouth marketing is strong, fast and unstoppable; it will demand authentic marketing. Businesses that plan for the digital future of marketing will be positioned to give their customers exactly what they want, how they want it, resulting in faster, greater and more sustainable profits.

Already, Gen Y’s have adopted new ways of making purchase decisions. Often, they will seek word-of-mouth referrals for products or services from their online communities, such as their Facebook friends. They will conduct all their pre-purchase research online and eventually book a service or make a purchase online at any time of day or night, basing their final decision solely on online information.

Be ready for your business to boom!

Ubiquitous high-speed Internet access in Australia has the potential to provide your small business with more profits using fewer resources. Sustainable Marketing Services Australia is preparing small businesses to seize the sustainable profit potential of the NBN. Give us a call on 1300 699 085 to discuss how you can model your business and marketing to reap the rewards.

 


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Maria Anderson

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Maria Anderson

Maria Anderson

Maria Anderson is the founding director of Sustainable Marketing Services, a multi-award winning, Brisbane marketing agency that delivers sustainable marketing services to growing technical, professional services and sustainability-focussed businesses. Maria's commitment to growing businesses wit...


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