Did you know that 88% of people who conduct a local search on their smartphones visit or call a store within a day? If your marketing strategy doesn’t include engaging with a local audience, you may be missing out! Local marketing can yield results for all types of businesses including product-based, brick and mortar, service-based, online, and offline. We have put together four strategies you can use to start a local marketing campaign.
- Use location-based marketing
Location-based marketing uses consumer mobile device data in conjunction with geographic location to deliver relevant ads and promotions. Small businesses often use this digital marketing strategy to raise awareness about big sales or events. Did you know that you can also use this strategy to market to people beyond your immediate area? Many businesses service several different locations. You can use geotargeting in each of the areas your business services or to grow brand awareness in a new market.
There are several benefits to geomarketing. When done correctly it can have an immediate positive impact on foot traffic to your business. It can also create a better user experience by delivering more relevant ads to people who are ready to make a purchase decision. This helps direct them away from competitors and towards your business.
An easy first step that businesses can take to start maximizing the effectiveness of this strategy is listing their company on online directories such as Google My Business, Yelp, Yellow Pages for Business, or Bing Local.
A second step that can be done in minutes is engaging with local online groups that might be interested in your products or services. This can be a highly effective strategy when done correctly. It is important to use groups to build genuine relationships and provide value without constantly trying to make a sale.
Another step to help maximize the effectiveness of location-based marketing is online advertising. It is easy to target ad campaigns to audiences in specific geographic locations. This can be done on a variety of platforms including Google, Facebook, and Instagram.
An offline location-based marketing strategy can be something as simple as participating in local events and trade-shows, supporting local causes, and sponsoring sports teams.
- Share success stories
Even though it might feel like it, we are never truly alone in our challenges and struggles. If one person has benefitted from your products or services there is a high probability more people need the solutions that you offer. When we see stories about how other people overcame an obstacle, reached a goal, or triumphed through adversity, we are more likely to be compelled to act and make a purchasing decision. Testimonials are one of the most powerful selling tools readily available to all businesses. One study shared by Bizrates Insights found that 92% of customers read testimonials before they make a purchasing decision.
Testimonials and success stories can be integrated into your geomarketing strategy. It is easy to create ads based on testimonials and then target them to potential customers from the same area where the customer who provided the testimonial is from.
- Make it easy to leave reviews
The importance of online reviews is no longer a question. It is a fact that online reviews are a must-have for businesses. We know that 80% of people check online reviews for local businesses and product pages with customer reviews enjoy three and a half more conversions than those without reviews. When a customer interacts with a review, they are 58% more likely to convert to being a customer.
Collecting reviews doesn’t have to be time-consuming. Even reviews as simple as clicking a star rating can influence people to make a purchase decision. Reviews do not have to be as long or detailed as testimonials to be highly effective. There are many easy-to-use review features on social media platforms in addition to a variety of email, website, or app integrations that can collect reviews.
- Connect with other businesses online and offline
Building an engaged and supportive business community can pay dividends in terms of increasing exposure and attracting new customers. When done right, this type of networking can benefit your business and allows you to highlight other products or services that your audience might enjoy. This can be done both online and offline through local Chamber of Commerce groups, small business associations, volunteer opportunities, and industry events. Strategic partnerships and networking focused on small business growth have been gaining popularity and traction in response to COVID-19’s impact on brands.