Breaking the TikTok algorithm, monkey NFTs, shitcoins…
While your competitors may be looking to peg these new school fads into their marketing strategies, old school marketing practices never go out of style. One in particular is the practice of Local Business Marketing.
What is Local Business Marketing?
Local Business Marketing are marketing strategies and tactics focused on targeting potential customers or clients locally within a certain distance from a business. Local Business Marketing is broad in practice as a subset of marketing and can consist of a range of offline and online methods. This type of marketing often includes a mix of both. We’ll look to highlight some of each for you to incorporate in your next marketing campaign.
Offline Marketing Strategies
Engage With Your Audience Locally
Marketing at its core is about community. It may sound obvious, but getting involved with your local community is crucial to local marketing. The best thing about community engagement is that it costs little per individual engagement. Examples of this strategy include participating in various community and seasonal events locally. Another example of this involves volunteering and donating to local charities and causes. Through old fashion community engagement, you’ll meet plenty of people and build brand awareness for your business and its efforts.
Establishing Power Partnerships
Business is personal. Building a joint, cross-promotion arrangement with other businesses can prove to be extremely effective if clear goals and expectations are established at the onset for a cross-promotion arrangement. Beyond casual referrals, this involves developing a deeper ongoing relationship with other local businesses to drive sales. Local farmers often do this with other local vendors when they join together to create a local farmer’s market. If you own a hair salon, you might invite a nail technician or esthetician to share your space increasing the number of people both businesses draw in. Whatever your business may be, the larger goal should be centered around creating more opportunities for referrals.
An effective recommendation we have given our clients in the home service industry at Schiffbauer Consulting Group is for business owners to have a “preferred vendor” list that offers exclusivity to those in a particular business category. This can be a list that is visibly public in one’s marketing efforts so the local community knows that local landscaping pros, From the Ground Up, “Just Call Judd” the Realtor when it comes to any residential real estate needs and vice versa.
Online Marketing Strategies
Getting Social With That Local Audience
Social media marketing can work well for local business visibility if you know your audience. With hundreds of millions of active monthly users, Facebook, Instagram and other social channels offer opportunities for increased brand awareness. It is important to focus on the social media channels that will most likely engage your target audience (Yes, even TikTok dances and memes are relevant if it connects to your audience in this case).
Relating to your ideal future customer or client on a local level goes beyond your offer, and social media serves as a digital extension of real world community building. Looking for ways to build rapport online in the same fashion as you would online can prove to be very scalable if you know your audience. When an audience member interacts or reacts to your content on social media, you are building trust and loyalty with that audience member. Over time, this can translate into sales or a profitable relationship.
Using a Targeted Approach In Digital Advertising
Social media platforms such as Facebook offer many ways to target customers and your audience locally, but what if local audiences aren’t easily discoverable through who you already know? This is where paid digital or pay-per-click advertising comes in handy.
Facebook offers a range of solutions to increase sales, traffic, and to build awareness through their Business Manager that allow you to target audiences down to specific mile ranges if you really want to tap into your backyard.
Google Ads is also highly effective to get in front of your desired customer in a local market. Especially when it comes to a customer who may not know who you are as a brand. Keyword targeting allows you to do this by using keywords relevant to your product or service in ad copy to achieve a top listing in search engines when someone goes to search.
Let’s face it, most marketing efforts are poorly tracked. Offline marketing efforts should have some sort of clear goal and desired outcome attached to them, as well as a way to measure key results or performance indicators.
When it comes to measuring online marketing efforts, most digital platforms will already have built-in tools for assessing and tracking analytics and data points, but what does the data really mean?
At Schiffbauer Consulting Group, we specialize in leveraging analytics for the desired outcomes you want to grow your business. This includes deeper assessing the effectiveness of your digital marketing efforts in terms of online conversions and traffic to your overall business goals.
Local Business Marketing is an important subset of marketing overall, but don’t be intimidated. Make things simple, as you are evaluating your overall marketing strategy to include a local marketing focus. It’s better to experiment and try new local marketing techniques than to wait for the perfect technique. The most important thing for you to do now is to get out and be present and top of mind in the market online and off.
Paul Schiffbauer is the founder of Schiffbauer Consulting Group, a hyperlocal digital marketing agency based out of York, PA.