Marketing at a local level by reaching out to communities with targeted messages can be much more effective than trying to reach a broader customer base. Did you know that over 10 billion unique searches occur online each month in the U.S. and it’s estimated that about 40% of those are for local services businesses, and products?1 Here are some tips for tapping into your local market via your online presence.
1. Homepage Tactics2
Since you only have a few seconds to grab your readers attention make it quickly clear what products and services you sell AND what market you serve – geographically and demographically. This helps people know right away what your niche is so you get the right customers. If you don’t ship out of state you want people to know that from the get go.
Utilize your Facebook page to build awareness, share, make connections, and to talk about and link to local events and news. Listen to what people in your community are saying and respond. You can also do cost-per-click advertising on Facebook that is entirely targeted to the city where you do business.
3. Switch from Phonebook to Web
If you know for sure you’re still getting calls from yellow page ads then by all means, ignore this. However, for most businesses today it’s probably wise to put your efforts onto the Web where most people are searching.
4. Get Started with Local SEO1
Start by getting your listing snapshot at www.getlisted.org. All you need to do is put in your business name and zip code, then click on “check listings” and you’ll see results for Google, Yelp, Bing, Yahoo, BestoftheWeb, and hotfrog. Claim any of the free listings for your business name that are not claimed.
5. Business Profile Best Practices4
When you’re claiming your listings or filling out your business profile on social media sites, whenever applicable try to include your basic business information, email address and website, business category, service areas, hours of operation and payment options, images, videos, and any other important details. If you’d like more step by step for these refer to 8 Steps to Building an Optimized Local Business Listing.
A strong online is certainly vital for most businesses today, But when it comes to local marketing don’t forget to step away from the computer to reach out and tap resources within your area including other businesses, nonprofits, schools, and churches. And stay on top of local happenings and activities and get involved.
- The Rise of Local SEO and the Death of the Yellow Pages
- Home Page Best Practices for Local Businesses
- 5 Ways Facebook Can Build Your Local Business
- 8 Steps to Building an Optimized Local Business Listing