Local Marketing for Small Businesses
Gaining traction as a small business is no easy feat. Especially in 2020, a time when anyone can open up their own company online in a matter of days, if not hours.
So how can you stay competitive in the midst of all these up-and-coming hotshots?
One of the most crucial aspects of effectively growing as a business is understanding the importance of local, or location-based, marketing.
What is Local Marketing?
It is a marketing strategy, targeting customers and patrons based on a small, narrowed-down location, such as a city or neighbourhood. Bigger, international businesses can consider applying location-based marketing principles on a nation-wide scale, thus attracting people of different nationalities more effectively.
Basically, local marketing is the way for businesses to reach customers in their vicinity. It can save lots of resources, and developing ties with the local community can be very advantageous early on.
Here, you’ll find some of the key aspects to consider in order to get started in location-based marketing.
Understanding the Community
Providing local customers with service that is tailored to their specific needs is often a successful promotion strategy for a small business.
For example, a small bakery in Borough Park, Brooklyn might want to advertise their products as kosher with a focus on baking traditional Jewish pastries such as the challah bread, due to the high volume of Orthodox Jews living in the area.
Strategies such as the one mentioned above should ensure a steady growth of local customers. Recognizing the needs and cultural make-up of the community will not go unnoticed.
Promoting the Product Locally
This does not necessarily mean spamming the neighbourhood with posters that advertise your product (although there is nothing wrong with the odd billboard here and there), but rather developing a sophisticated tactic that caters to the local community’s tastes and preferences.
One of the sure-fire ways to kick-start a location-based promotion campaign is involving local celebrities and personalities to promote your product at various events – this will get the community interested in your small business.
Another method for getting the locals on your side is providing them with unique advantages applicable only to the residents of a specific area. This can work especially well for online businesses and e-commerce.
Take TeeJunction as an example – this company specializing in t-shirt printing services offers free shipping across the entirety of Australia.
This tactic can be applied to any other product or service that can be ordered online and delivered to one’s doorstep. Offering free delivery in a particular municipality as a restaurant is almost guaranteed to generate interest.
Local Sourcing and Involvement in the Community Life
Almost every small business requires raw materials and other resources in order to create their product or service, and they have to get it from somewhere. Sacrificing some of the capital to buy those materials from a local source can prove to be immensely beneficial in the future.
Sticking with the restaurant example – if you’re a pizzeria and source your tomatoes from the nearby farmers’ market, you can advertise it in your menu, attracting local patriots to the establishment. It also enables you to drive up prices, since people are more inclined to pay for locally grown produce.
Not only does it prove your business’s dedication to the area, but also emphasizes environmental consciousness, which is a huge plus from the customer’s point of view nowadays.
There are many other ways in which a small business can establish a presence in its community’s day to day life. Organizing charity drives and cultural events will get the brand’s name out there. Customers will then not only associate it with a particular product or service, but also with all the good it has blessed the community with.
Such actions may turn out to be quite costly at first, but hey — you’ve got to spend money to make money!
As a small business, establishing an online presence is a must.
When a customer searches for a product or a service on the Web, local results will always pop up on top of the list, regardless of what they are looking for. This is because search engine algorithms rely on the user’s location to serve up most relevant results. There are loads of ways in which you can optimize your web page in order to take advantage of that fact.
Include mentions of your location on the site, especially on the homepage. Have your images reflect the area you’re based in. Reference local values and symbols whenever appropriate. These seemingly insignificant things can get picked up by algorithms, spreading the word about your small business around the neighborhood.
Think Global, Act Local
This cliche saying proves to be relevant now more than ever. Somewhat counter-intuitively, if you effectively market your small business within the local community, its chances of blowing up on a nationwide, and potentially worldwide scale increase significantly.
Even if your ambitions aren’t quite as wide-reaching, keeping in touch with the community is vital. Human connection is the key to successful local marketing, as well as creating a long-lasting and profitable enterprise.
We hope you enjoyed this promoted piece as much as we did!