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5 Easy Ways to Make Local Marketing Matter

Local marketing – marketing that’s focused on reaching customers in a specific geographic area – is not for every business. But if you have a physical presence in a specific location and provide services to your community (think bank, florist, shoe store, restaurant, deli, dry cleaners, etc….), you will most likely be able to benefit by using a targeted approach to build your credibility as a local resource online as well as off.

Chances are, if you’re a local business and have done any sort of online marketing, you’ve already:

  • listed your business on local resource websites and directories (Chamber of Commerce);
  • set up a Facebook page;
  • have a Twitter account and a Google+ Local page

But there’s plenty more you can do. And much of it is almost painless to roll in to your day-to-day plans.

Local Marketing Matters – Online and Off

The local, in-person or in-store activities you do often have “digital” parallels, and when they are managed in concert, they can have an amplifying effect. Of course, local events will bring physical traffic to your store. And promoting these events online can help confirm for the search engines that you are, indeed, a quality, local business. This in turn will help your rankings in search engine results and will help bring traffic to your website and, ultimately, your store.

Here are 5 simple ways to take “digital” advantage of your in-person activities.

1. Get involved in the community

  • In person: Join a Local Chamber or Business Association
  • Online: Get your business listed on the Chamber or Association website

2. Give back

  • In person: Sponsor a town event
  • Online: receive coverage in the local paper, by submitting a press release or inviting the local editors to the event

3. Partner with other local businesses

  • In person: Co-host an event
  • Online: Cross-promote the event on your and their social media sites; split the cost of advertising the event; submit a co-sponsored press release to the local papers

4. Reward loyal customers

  • In person: Set up a loyalty system (like a frequent buyer punch card)
  • Online: Loyal customers become your online “brand advocates”

5. Customer reviews

  • In person: Ask for reviews and feedback after special events; provide an in-store comment book; save letters written by happy customers
  • Online: Publish the reviews your website, etc. (with permission, of course)

Sales Renewal’s insight:

The local, in-person or in-store activities you do often have “digital” parallels, and when they are managed in concert, they can have an amplifying effect.