Johnston Press has launched a nationwide campaign across all of its local titles to encourage small businesses to advertise online.

The Think Digital initiative aims to promote the benefits of digital advertising to SMEs who may have traditionally only advertised in print.

A recent Advertising Association study found that businesses who advertise online and engage in social media were more likely to see an uplift in customer loyalty.

Neil Jones

Neil Jones

Neil Jones, Johnston Press’ chief commercial officer, said: “Digital advertising and harnessing the power of social media to promote their business can, for many SMEs, feel daunting but it can be the perfect way to broaden their reach and give them the ability to really engage with their audience.

“Johnston Press has almost 14 million monthly unique users across our online portfolio. We know digital and we understand what a powerful tool it can be. Our Think Digital initiative will encourage our customers to consider the many other opportunities available to them which can complement their print advertising spend in a really efficient and economical way.”

Earlier this year the regional publisher launched Digital Kitbag, a “digital marketing solution” for local businesses keen to reach an online audience for the first time.

Jones added: “Small business owners really do need to start putting digital at the heart of their marketing plans and we’re perfectly placed to help them focus on what they need to, which is running their business, and let us take the headache and hassle out of digital marketing.”