A small business based in a specific area may not be ready to compete with a larger business providing a similar product/service in a broader area. Therefore, the smaller business must strategize its marketing efforts to cater specifically to its local area. Here is how you locally market your small business:
DIVERSITY MATTERS: OFFLINE AND ONLINE WORKING AS ONE
You may be the only business that is selling a particular type of product/service in your area, which can prove to be very beneficial for your business. If there is a want for the service, there will a huge demand. Diversifying is a game changer in local advertising. Online marketing will come in at a low cost, so budget and coordination should be allocated towards getting offline impressions. Marketing such as boutique publications, outdoor media, and/or local business partnerships can drastically increase demand in a given area. Using online to capture the transition from offline to device search can give great returns with a given campaign.
A great way to market in your area is to network with other local companies. These businesses already will have their clientele base. This can increase customer awareness and attract new customers to your store! You can even ask the businesses to put up your ads in their store/hand out business cards, which would be a huge help in promoting your business.
Not only is focusing on your offline marketing efforts important, but your online presence is extremely important as well. Attracting new customers online can be very difficult, especially when first starting out as a small business. As a small company, you will need to come up with the best marketing strategies that fit to your specific clientele base online. How do you know who your clientele is digitally and how do you market to them?
SEM (Search Engine Marketing) and coming up with keywords that you think would target your local clientele base is a great way to start. You will need to come up with both long-tail and short-tail key words and maybe do a trial and error period to see which work better for your business. The use of these keywords can differentiate your site from competitors when done right. If you know your customer and you’re using keywords specific to your local market, your business should pop up on the first page of searching in your geographic area. To find out what key words are best, maybe ask some of your existing customers what they usually search to find your company. This is a quick and easy way to get your business on top of the SERP (Search Engine Results Page).
Another great way to locally market your business is social media and content marketing. Social media is a rising demand in today’s world. Becoming in touch with the trends of today’s trend of social media can prove to be extremely rewarding to a local business. Any promotions and events that you may have are great to sponsor on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. You want to use social media as a tool to strengthen your sales and build your customer base.
Content is everything that is surrounding and representing your business. What you put out there as a business speaks about everything — your brand, values, appreciation for customers and employees, etc. so it is extremely important to have great content surrounding your business’ marketing efforts. Below is a graph showing how to create and maintain a local content strategy for your business:
To learn more in depth about the steps of local content marketing, visit this resource by Moz.
If marketing is done right, small business’ on both a national and regional scale can use local marketing for higher ROAS (Return On Ad Spend), increase brand equity and awareness, and gain a bigger clientele base.
All in all, when it comes to strategizing your marketing for your business, you should think in a more micro perspective than a macro one. You should create marketing campaigns targeting your local consumer before creating one for a regional/national level to ensure make sure that your ad is reaching your local customer first since you are a small business. This way you can measure conversion for your small business locally before jumping into marketing for a larger consumer base. This will give you a taste of how well your business is reaching and converting customers before blindly spending a lot of money on marketing for a larger audience.
YOUR TEAM MATTERS
Spending more time on marketing brings in new customers and new customers turns into higher ROI and conversion rates. But you can’t do it all on your own. This is where your marketing team steps in!
You can’t be everywhere as a small business owner, which makes the people you hire and work with essential to your overall success. Local marketing is about having many boots on the ground. Having a team of people that can pick up on community signals and take those signals to create an enticing message to generate traffic are essential to a successful business.
A great way to carry this out is to provide opportunities within the community by hiring people who know and grew up in the local area. This can prove to be a huge advantage in building your clientele base locally because there is no one more knowledgable about what the community looks for in a business than the people who are living there. This is also a great way to spread the word about your small business on a micro level. Small businesses looking to expand their market on a macro level, however, may have to employ a specialized team to research potential market patterns and opportunities on a national/regional level.
CONTROL MATTERS: GRANULAR TARGETING IS LIKE HAVING CIRCUIT BREAKERS
Keep the lights on when the ideas are bright, turn off the rest and cut wasteful spend. It is a really simple logic. Set up more tracking databases and measure your results to see what is working for your business and what isn’t! You can save a lot of money, time, and effort if you know how to market yourself efficiently without going over your budget. If you are seeing that one marketing tool is creating a higher conversion rate and larger ROI for your company, then you should be focusing on putting money into that form of advertising!
THE OFFER MATTERS: POWERFUL AND TIMELY MESSAGES ARE HUGE
Every community is unique so printing and posting 20 thousand flyers that read exactly the same isn’t your best move. Being specific helps direct action, which in turn, lowers cost effectively. Everyone processes things differently and this has a lot to do with knowing your client. You’re not going to market a T-Shirt that you’re selling in New York the same way you would in LA because they’re completely different clients! This is the same way you wouldn’t promote your local business the same from community to community. Set up a calendar to create multiple ad runs with a variation of messages based on what area you are advertising. In the digital world, you can specialize a landing page specific to each advertising campaign. Remember to keep it simple on the design and focus on the intended market!
STOP THINKING AND RUN SOME TESTS
It may cost you more to think about this strategy than actually trying it out and seeing what happens. Everything from printing technology to communications technology is driving the cost of testing down, so take advantage ahead of saturation. Why compete when you can lead?
Your monthly sales can provide enough trust to receive a small business loan and use it as an exploratory budget for your business’ marketing efforts. As your campaign becomes more successful, you will be able to receive even more funding thanks to your proven track record. United Capital Source can help you get that business loan regardless of your credit score and it’s easy as filling out a one-page application! Building market opportunities is an excellent example of using your business loan strategically to substantially improve the competitive power of your business at any scale!