Local marketing strategies benefit new and established businesses by bringing brand awareness to your community. This can be achieved through a strategy specifically for your business online and in person. “Where to buy” and “near me” mobile queries have grown by over 200% in the past two years. (Think with Google, 2019)
Try these four local marketing strategies to improve brand awareness in your community.
Make Your Website Local
When creating your website, your content should include local keywords, short and long on multiple web pages. An easy way to do this is to have an “about us” page or a blog.
This can include:
- Your history in the area
- Business address with map
- Local business partners
- Community involvement
- Areas you serve
- Information about your team
- How your business was started and what has happened since then
Other ways to make your business local online:
- Getting involved with relevant and local happenings, and sharing them in a blog/social media
- Making sure your location details are accurate on your website
- Sharing local photos and using appropriate meta and alt tags
- Using localized keywords is important for you to be found by the community and to help boost your SERP ranking
Local Third-Party Websites
Third-party websites, also referred to as local business directories, are free and easy local organic marketing placements worth adding to your local outreach strategy.
All local businesses should take advantage of and Some local business directories are:
- Google My Business
- Bing Places
- Merchant circle
- Better Business Bureau (BBB)
These sites educate people about your business and assist in finding it. When creating a listing, put as much detailed information as possible, and make sure the listings are consistent across all third-party websites. Consumers want to easily find your address, phone number, and your website. Your goal for using local business directories is to not just be found but to have the user engage, learn about your business, and become a customer.
Don’t have any listings yet? Google My Business is the first one to start with. Most people use Google as their main search engine and when done properly your business will appear for searches and on a Google Maps search. Keep in mind, locals and people visiting the area might not use Google for your business name, but instead your products, services, or industry.
Also, when creating your Google My Business, optimizing your Google My Business profile correctly will help your business page move up on Google. Your Google My Business profile is like a website when ranking on google, relevancy to the search term and quality is are factors when ranking.
Does the category matter for your listings?
It’s crucial to select the correct category for all listing websites! When someone searches on Google your third-party listings will appear according to the category you picked. Especially on Yelp, which can help your website rank higher in a Google search if the correct category is selected for your industry.
Keep all third-party sites updated
It’s just as important to keep all profiles updated as it is for your business details in your profile. The smallest change like hours, phone, or location needs to be updated ASAP. Ignoring small changes can make it hard for customers to engage with your profile and potentially lead them to believe your company is untrustworthy.
Reviews are important to reply to, including the positive and the negative. Reviews make your business trustworthy and give the feeling to users that you care. When receiving a negative review, look at it as a learning experience and as an opportunity to gain back a customer. While negative reviews are never fun, a thoughtfully crafted response can make your business authentic, gaining more trust from customers.
When using Yelp reviews, do not directly send customers to the review page or use the “find friends” tool to invite customers for reviews. Yelp will know and knock you for that. Instead, have them arrive organically by searching your business and then clicking on the Yelp link and reach out to people through social media.
In-Person Community Marketing
Whether you are a new business or an established business, local community marketing is important to gain new customers. In-Person Local marketing involves participating in and supporting your community. For new businesses this type of marketing is fantastic for brand awareness and creates word-of-mouth marketing, or referrals, which often yields the highest closing rates.. For established businesses participating in your community is beneficial as you can directly engage with your current and potential customers.
Directly engaging with consumers assists with collecting data for demographics and psychographics, creating the opportunity for future optimization. Plus, it never hurts to support your local community, doing so can help people trust your business more, just by knowing you support them.
There are many ways you can support your local community are:
- Sponsor school sports and events
- County fairs
- Sponsor community events
- Pair up with another local business
- Host a family event
- Volunteer with local non-profits
- Create flyers for community boards and local events
- Join local Chamber of Commerce
- Create a guide for local events
Creating social media visible locally
There are plenty of free ways to use social media to locally build brand awareness, engage, create relationships and make sales. Most Americans are on at least one social media platform, and when you make your social media local, your posts can appear in front of your community a couple of ways.
Some ways to make your social media local:
- Tag the location
- Use Local Hashtags
- Use Facebook events
- Create a contest or giveaway on social media
- Promote users reviews
- Find and connect with local influencers or bloggers
Whether your business is new or established, bringing brand awareness to your business locally can only help your business. The best part of local marketing is, it creates loyalty. Is brand loyalty important? Yes! Niki Kaylor found that “long-term customers buy 90% more frequently, spend 60% more per transaction and are five times more likely to stick with a brand.”
There are many simple ways to and all of these can be on your own or by hiring someone.
Local marketing is also great because you can also see an impact in your community. It’s rewarding, fun, and when combined with referrals, can lead to some big results. We’re interested in how local marketing has helped your business grow. Let us know on social media, or send us a message to share your experiences.
Are you looking for more ways to connect with your local audience? Give V12 Marketing a call, or send us a message here, and get a free project consultation with our team.