Study: Small Businesses Cut Marketing During Pandemic, Most Say They Had To Pivot

Beleaguered small businesses changed the ways they do things during the pandemic, and many have reduced their marketing, according to “One Year Later: How 254 U.S. Small Businesses Fared During Covid-19, a study released Thursday by PostcardMania.  

Of the SMBs polled, 59.75% pivoted, and 9.32% have simply closed. The remaining 30.93% report no change.  

In addition, over half have maintained the changes, 33.12% completely. But 24.03% have mostly reverted back to their pre-pandemic ways, while 18.83% have done so partially and only 3.24% have done so fully.

Asked if COVID-19 had affected their marketing, they say:

  • No effect—we continued marketing at our usual/planned outflow — 28.18%
  • Yes, we cut back on our spending significantly — 31.82% 
  • Yes, we cut back on our spending a little bit — 14.55% 
  • Yes, we increased our spending significantly — 7.27% 
  • Yes, we increased our spending a little bit — 7.73%
  • N/A, we don’t actively market the business, so nothing has changed — 10% 



Those marketing budgets presumably include email.

But SMBs are returning to normal in some ways—55.73% say all their employees have returned to the office. Another 19.85% have a mix of some staff working from the office and others from home. 

In addition, 13.74% said staffers are now permanently working at home. And 10.69% that they are still temporarily working from home.  

Have SMBs returned to their usual marketing activities? They answer:

  • Yes—we are fully back to our normal marketing actions — 15.93% 
  • Yes, we have actually increased our marketing — 28.57%
  • No, we are marketing again but on a smaller scale — 36.81%
  • No, we aren’t marketing at all — 18.68% 

PostcardMania recently surveyed 254 small businesses. 



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