Whether you just celebrated your Grand Opening or have been experiencing steady growth for several years, local businesses have unique marketing advantages. Here are five ways to market your small business and further your reach into your local market:
1. Register your company with free local Online Directories
Have you ever conducted a search for a local service or business in your area? The businesses displayed near the top of your search results have likely registered with local Online Directories, like Google My Business. By registering on these sites, your company name, phone number, hours of operation, location and other pertinent pieces of information will be easily accessible to individuals conducting searches for related businesses or services. Best of all, most of the Online Directories allow you to register for free! Already listed with several of these directories? It’s never a bad idea to periodically review all your profiles to make sure they are current and as complete as possible.
2. Attract more local followers on Facebook
After creating a Facebook business page, develop a plan for finding and generating more local followers. Posting pictures is great but, depending on your product, your page might not experience an immediate rapid increase in local followers. The good news? You can be as creative as you’d like here! Some businesses hold contests or drawings for people who like or share their posts. Alternatively, and for a very minimal investment, Facebook ads will allow you to target local users within a defined demographic.
3. Optimize your website for local searches
You might have the best-looking website in town but if people can’t find you, the website is not working to its potential. When optimizing your site, make sure your SEO strategy includes optimizing for location, in addition to your products and services.
4. Networking and community involvement
Aside from digital marketing, “old-fashioned” networking and community involvement still has tremendous value. Your local Chamber of Commerce should have plenty of networking opportunities but if you’d like to take a step further, look for other organizations to support. Look for speaking opportunities, sponsor a youth sports team, ask your local PTO if you can provide a gift certificate for an upcoming event, or sponsor a local race! The sky’s the limit here. The more you get involved with your community, the more ways you will discover opportunities for growth.
5. Ask, ask, ask for referrals and reviews
There is nothing more powerful than having happy customers share their positive experiences. Make it part of your marketing plan to encourage customers to provide reviews on Google, Facebook page, Yelp, and other social channels. Establishing a great customer referral program should also be part of your plan for growth.
What other strategies have you used to grow your local presence?