February 6, 2018

Nine Ways Your Small Business Can Boost Local Marketing Efforts

Here’s something you’ve heard a thousand times before: Marketing is constantly evolving. It’s not much of a revelation. But let’s take a moment to explore what this often overused statement really means.

For decades, marketing was a highly exclusive profession with a workforce of specialists who dedicated their entire careers to mastering the craft. These master marketers developed massive campaigns for equally massive audiences.

But today, marketing is available to anyone who has something to sell. And the audiences that marketers target have become more narrowly focused. Massive billboards targeted at tens of thousands of people have developed into direct mail targeted at individual households.

To put it simply, marketing is more and more becoming a localized practice. This is good news for marketers and businesses. Why? Because localized marketing is relevant. And relevant marketing is highly effective, leading to an increase in ROI. Just consider for a moment the last thing that grabbed your attention as a consumer. It was most likely something that was relevant to you.

So how can you can you boost your own local marketing efforts? Let’s take a look at nine effective strategies.

1. Personalized and Incentivized Direct Mail

Direct mail provides your business with the opportunity to reach highly targeted geographic areas. But just because your mailer lands at a prospect’s door step doesn’t mean you’ve earned that person’s attention.

With personalized direct mail assets, you can ensure that your prospective customer’s attention is immediately drawn to your piece of mail. This tactic shows your potential customer that you have an understanding and awareness of each individual that you’re marketing to.

Taking this direct mail approach one step further, you can appeal to your prospect’s needs and desires by including special offers in your direct mail to incentivize action. From a discount codes to limited-time offers, the added sense of urgency can contribute to a more effective direct mail campaign.

2. Handwritten Communication

Inspire an immediate sense of brand recognition as well as value by sending your customers handwritten thank-you letters on branded stationery.

In addition to identifying and remembering the tone and visual components of your business, your customers will also have a strong sense of your values as a brand.

3. Create Valuable Original Content

Custom content represents the connection between your business goals and your customers’ needs. Whether they need to solve a problem, find information, or achieve a task, your content should focus on being a helpful resource. By customizing your content to address customer needs, you differentiate your business within your niche as an authoritative and helpful resource. In turn, you’ll attract more relevant visitors to your site and visitors will be more likely to trust your brand. In fact, a recent study found that 56% of marketers believe personalized content contributes to higher engagement rates.

4. Reward Good Behavior with Loyalty Programs

Referral customers and brand awareness are one of the secret ingredients of any local marketing campaign. With loyalty reward programs that incentivize check-ins on platforms such as Yelp and Facebook, you extend your marketing reach to the social circles surrounding all of your customers. A simple discount based on a Facebook check-in can contribute to an increase in visits, as well as an overall boost to your brand exposure.

5. Polish Your Social Media

Social media is an increasingly crowded space in which to market your products and services. With paid and organic options for distributing your content through social channels, you need every advantage possible to rise above the noise. With custom graphic designs to accompany your social posts, your business will stand a better chance of getting noticed and making a strong impression.

6. Make Your Business Search-Friendly

These days, customers are more likely to discover your business through local Google search results than they are by simply driving by your storefront or seeing your advertisements in the wild. For instance, say you own a small floral shop and you want to attract new customers. Now imagine someone searching for “flower shops near me” and having several results come back, none of which are yours. That’s a huge missed opportunity! By optimizing your Google My Business page, you’ll make it easy for your customers to find you.

7. Update Your Signage

The success of your small business ultimately boils down to getting noticed and making sure you make a great brand impression so that you can win and retain customers. That’s why it’s critical to success to have well-designed, professionally created signage and banners. Having a sign that clearly and concisely conveys your brand, services, and values can make the difference between a customer driving right by or stopping in to say hello.

8. Utilize Cross-Promotion

Promoting your business is one of those things you do on a daily basis. For all the time and effort it takes, it’s worth it! But you don’t have to promote your business all by yourself. You can build your customer base and boost your revenue by leveraging cross-promotion techniques. And with cross-promotion, it’s all about finding the right partners and the right possibilities.

Ideally, you’ll partner with another business that serves your same target audience but doesn’t compete in your area. For instance, a hotel might partner with a local restaurant. Partners involved in cross-promotion campaigns might choose to produce a newsletters, cross-promote on social media, co-sponsor a good cause such as a charity run, or collaborate with each other’s social influencers.

9. Stay in Touch with Email Marketing

Once you’ve earned the attention and business of your customers, it’s up to you to keep in touch with them and nurture their loyalty. Using email marketing techniques to communicate with your current and previous clients is an efficient way to keep your brand top of mind. You might choose to send out a bi-monthly newsletter or a series of targeted offers based on your customers’ previous purchases or identified needs. Either way, email marketing is a convenient way to stay engaged with your audience.

At PostNet, we spend all day every day helping businesses work better. We’re here to help you with your local marketing efforts, as well as anything else your company might need!

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