SMBs Schooled in Online Marketing

Large corporations have cube farms full of online marketers augmented with outside consultants, but small and medium businesses (SMBs) don’t have the resources to do the same.

So the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Verizon, the regional telecom’s online yellow pages, are running a program to help SMBs learn how to market themselves on the Internet.

The Internet Learning Tutor (ILT) is available for free at the SuperPages site and the U.S. Chamber’s Small Business Center.

“This adds a valuable new element to our online resources,” Linda Rozett, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s vice president of communications, said in a statement. “Too many small businesses think online advertising is just for the big, national companies.”

ILT evolved from a series of hands-on Verizon programs conducted in 25 different cities since 1998. Verizon worked on the programs with local organizations, such as public libraries and work force investment boards to train more than 5,000 attendees. From these events came the ILT curriculum.

“This information will help [SMBs] reach new customers,” Eric Chandler, vice president of e-commerce marketing for SuperPages, said in a statement. “And when they succeed, we succeed. Plus, the more they know about effective online advertising — what makes a good Web site, what makes a good banner ad — the better we’re going to be able to help them.”

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