Today, Todd Wasserman wrote a post upon Twitter’s news of launching its new branding pages.  The news ushers more online marketing and branding opportunities for businesses seeking to broaden consumer awareness regarding products, services, and company brands.

The free options aligned with the brand pages allow companies to customize accounts with headers (comparable to those aligned with display banner ads), allowing for conspicuous taglines and fonts, making a company’s brand more prominent than previously-allocated under Twitter’s current design.  Additionally, companies may choose to keep particular tweets atop of timelines.  These tweets auto-expand, revealing embedded photos or videos, creating more marketing and branding options, without needed actions from on-page browsers.

Furthermore, the brand pages segment a company’s “@” replies and “mentions.”  As mentioned in an Ad Age Digital post, this particular function will serve customer-service-oriented companies well, enabling them to respond to customers without having to sift through other past Twitter activities.

Twitter’s new brand pages should be a welcomed online marketing tool for brands struggling to make social media connections with a meager 140 characters.  Now, companies can offer more information, create more associations, and engage in more branding initiatives using Twitter.

The new launch involves 21, specific companies including Verizon, Dell, Nike, McDonalds, and other familiar brands, all forging ongoing dialogues with Twitter regarding the new move.

It will be interesting to track the movement and social embrace of the 21 brands as Twitter launches its brand pages.  The move couldn’t have come at a better time for the platform, as social site competitors, such as Google+ (also issuing brand pages), undergo modifications to emulate the multiple options afforded to a site offering such multi-media opportunities as Facebook (a site that received more traffic than Google last year!)

Kenneth C. Wisnefski, Entrepreneur and founder / CEO of WebiMax, the leader in search engine optimization, announced “2012 can be a rebound year for SMBs if business owners commit to innovating and focusing on client-retention.”  Wisnefski furthers “most business owners are reluctant to move forward due to pressing economic concerns including the financial markets, credit ratings and unemployment; however it’s the lack of focus on key internal areas that are keeping them in a hover pattern.”

While the Small Business Confidence Index rose slightly in October (90.2, from 88.9 in September) in large part due to sales growth less negative, there have been positive signs in recent weeks.  Leading up to Thanksgiving weekend, retailers and online merchants spent an average of 31 percent more on paid search advertising which translated to a record 16.4 percent uptick in Thanksgiving weekend purchasing by the consumer.  This suggests both retailers and consumers have a lot of cash sitting on the sidelines.

“This is where innovation comes in to play.  Those merchants and retailers who chose innovative and lesser-expensive advertising channels including social media and paid search were rewarded well during the Thanksgiving weekend”, states Wisnefski.  “Ecommerce is surging and SMBs that want to generate new sales growth and improve client retention need to pay close attention to the momentum that is building.”

While only 62 percent of retailers committed to investing more in ecommerce in 2011 (statistics gathered from Forrester’s Research), Wisnefski states the remaining percentage is missing out on huge growth opportunities.

“We have seen significant results from merchants that have increased their ecommerce initiatives this year.  At WebiMax, our ecommerce division has increased revenue 10-fold in 2011 as more retailers want to have their store-front open 24/7/365”, states Wisnefski.  “This reinvestment also enhances client-retention because the present-day consumer is looking for an online store where they can buy their products to alleviate leaving their homes.  The consumer is always looking for value, whether it is free shipping, or shopping in comfort from their home, to creating an online account that makes purchases more convenient and faster”, concludes Wisnefski.

SMBs have a lot of cash sitting on the sidelines as evidenced by the uptick in holiday advertising.  Innovation and client retention rates are two important factors that business owners need to pay close attention to in order to stay competitive in a global market.