Last year, Americans filed 5.1 million new business applications—just shy of an all-time record set the year before. 1 Companies like this employ nearly half of the American workforce and generate half of our nation’s GDP.2
As an advertising professional, a question that comes to mind is: If small- to medium-sized businesses, otherwise known as SMBs, are driving growth for our economy, who’s driving growth for them? Our team at NBCUniversal decided to answer that question by establishing the SMB Growth Team that focuses on driving impact for small-and medium-sized businesses.
Educating the Marketplace
Earlier this summer, NBCUniversal partnered with the team at Commerce Summit to bring together over 200 entrepreneurs and executives from some of the fastest growing brands in the country in a day filled with workshops, panel discussions, and networking. As much as we shared how we can help these brands advertise on linear, digital, and streaming, they taught us about their unique needs.
From our conversations, it quickly became clear that the headlines don’t tell the full story: Despite current economic headwinds, entrepreneurship is thriving. In fact, current macroeconomic pressures have created leaner startups, laser-focused on profitability—and, as a result, their marketing strategies depend on precise data, measurement, and attribution.
At the same time, shifts in iOS and privacy regulations are limiting the usage of data. When you couple that with an increasingly fragmented viewer marketplace, there is a clear gap for how small- and medium-sized businesses need to advertise. They need to expand beyond traditional search and social tactics and explore new tools and platforms to engage their customers through storytelling and reimagine their advertising plans with the same entrepreneurial spirit that’s brought them this far.
Transforming Our Business to Serve Yours
As one of the world’s largest media and tech companies, we’ve built a reputation on delivering impactful reach for major brands on a local, national, and global scale.
Over the last couple years especially, the Advertising & Partnerships division has transformed its business to be ready for this moment of helping smaller brands achieve their goals. The organization rolled out Peacock Ad Manager, a winning digital streaming product, invested in first-party data through NBCUnified, built self-service buying tools, commerce capabilities, and advanced audience targeting through NBC Spot On for local clients as well as holistic measurement solutions.
But, this hasn’t been only a few years in the making. For decades, NBCUniversal has worked with local businesses and national brands who want to advertise to local markets. Through deep collaboration with our established team of local ad sales experts and 43 NBC and Telemundo television stations, the SMB Growth Team will partner closely with the Local Ad Sales team and the entire division to streamline our technology, resources, and people to help SMB’s grow through solutions that are accessible, affordable, and simple to use.
Our national team consists of 30 experts handpicked from 2,000 employees across our division, which is backed by the diverse portfolio of premium content and the ad tech prowess of Comcast NBCUniversal. This team’s sole mission is to super serve small-and medium-sized brands and their advertising needs by opening up access to our iconic stories and cutting-edge technology for any business to leverage.
Super-Sized Impact for Your Sized Business
We know many businesses are still learning how to effectively complement search and social with engaging stories. That’s why we offer programs like “Open Doors: Where Small Businesses Thrive” to help smaller and minority-owned brands use our storytelling playbook. It’s also why our commerce solutions leverage the power of storytelling to authentically bring in smaller brands with a lower barrier of entry.
So, are you looking for the broad reach of over 1 billion consumers? Well, we’ve got you covered. What about precision targeting to find your exact audiences? We’ve got that, too. Looking for full funnel measurement, optimization, and attribution? Check, check, and check. Is brand safety important to you? It’s always our priority.
And remember, we’re not discouraging advertising on social. We’re actually complementing the strategy by helping brands meet consumers who are on social, but through the added power of premium content. Consider the work we did with Tinuiti, the largest independent performance marketing firm across Streaming TV as well as search, social, and marketplaces. We launched a digital campaign for one of their fashion brands by tapping into our passionate E! fandom via a TikTok takeover that spotlighted the brand, generated millions of views, and, above all, established a memorable connection with consumers.
Open for All Businesses, and Ready to Grow with You
The progress we’ve made in serving SMBs is thrilling, but even more exciting is the progress we’ll achieve as we continue on this journey together. As we launch our complete self-serve product Peacock Ad Manager more widely, it’ll allow even more SMBs to purchase targeted advertising across our digital footprint nationally, regionally, and locally, all with just the click of a button. Already, we’re seeing massive return on investment, with two jewelry companies advertising on Peacock receiving 3-8x return on ad spend. Soon, using Peacock Ad Manager will be as easy to use from your couch as Peacock itself!
And this is just the beginning. We’re ready to grow with you as your business scales. And whether you’re a start-up, or just starting on your marketing journey, our team cannot wait to get started with you.
1 Stephanie Ferguson, “Interactive Map: New Business Applications Across the Country,” U.S. Chamber of Commerce (2023)
2 “The State of Small Business Now,” U.S. Chamber of Commerce (2023)