In the days of yore, if you wanted to promote your local business, your main tools would be:
direct mail advertising
trade shows; and
Today, if you want to stay competitive and gain more customers, you have to know how to do local inbound marketing.
What is local inbound marketing?
You probably already know what inbound marketing is. But just in case you need a refresher, it simply means a collection of strategies that bring customers to your business. Adding the term ‘local’ just means that you’re not focusing on mass market but rather confining your marketing efforts to the local population or the people within your community.
So how exactly do you do local inbound marketing to acquire more customers?
Here are five tried and tested strategies you can implement for your local business.
1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
When you Google a product or service, do you care to check websites listed after page three? Most customers are the same. If you want your site to rank high up in search results, you need great local SEO.
But that’s easier said than done. SEO is a specialized field. And it’s constantly evolving.
Now, if you prefer to take on SEO by yourself, there are some DIY tactics you can try. Optimizing your Google+ Local Page is one. Making sure your business listings on local websites are up to date is another.
The latter is especially important because you want potential customers to find you when they most urgently need you. Chances are, they will be using their phones to search for the products you’re selling or services you’re offering. If your listings aren’t consistent, your business info won’t be the first to show up in the search results.
Essentially, this is the equivalent of giving your business away to competitors.
Some of the other SEO stuff such as keyword research, optimizing landing pages, utilizing inbound links, and so on are best left to experts. Not because you can’t acquire the skills to become proficient at SEO, but rather to leave you free to focus on running your business. Most SEO tasks are time-consuming and you’re better off directing your energy into growing your company.
2. Content Marketing
You can have a well-designed website, but that’s not going to be enough if you want online traffic.
For people to check your site, you must offer valuable information. And by valuable information, we mean answers to your customers’ questions. One way to do that is by maintaining a blog.
We say maintain because a lot of businesses create a blog but don’t keep it supplied with fresh content. It’s a shame because search engines such as Google just loves content that’s shareable, relevant, and current.
You also have to check if your content is driving conversions. If it’s not, you should work on clarifying your messaging and calls to action. You should also know that content marketing isn’t limited to maintaining a blog.
Your content marketing strategy could also include press releases (PRs), videos, infographics, podcasts, white papers, and so on.
Tip: Make sure to use geography tags throughout your content. For example, if you’re a personal injury lawyer, you could say “personal injury lawyer in Toronto.” Or if you’re a realtor, it could be “NYC real estate.”
3. Social Media
If you’re not using social media to attract new customers, what’s stopping you?
We genuinely want to know because almost all businesses nowadays use social media to engage with their existing and potential customers. Some even use Facebook or Twitter or Instagram as their main platforms for acquiring customers.
There are also a number of advertising options available on different social media channels. And even if you’re not prepared yet to spend on ads, your business can still benefit from having a strong social media strategy.
For one thing, you can activate your social media channels to initiate a conversation with your customers. It doesn’t matter if the discussion stemmed from a negative review. The important thing is to keep the conversation going and to turn a negative opinion of your business into a positive one.
4. Email Marketing
Who says email is dead? Definitely not us.
We know for a fact that email marketing, when done right, is an effective way of keeping existing customers happy. And there are many ways to do this.
You can, for example, do a special monthly offer exclusive to your existing customers. There’s also the good old referral bonus.
What you need to understand is that while it’s important to gain new customers, it should never be at the cost of your existing clients. Growing your customer base also means finding ways to keep your current customers loyal to your business.
The good thing is that email marketing can be automated. Plus, it can be easily integrated with the other local inbound marketing strategies we have mentioned.
You can try all the local inbound marketing strategies we have listed so far, but you’re not going to get very far if you don’t analyze your results.
Everything you do should be tracked, measured, and then optimized. True, there are times when your gut instinct will prove to be right, but business decisions should be based on data, not intuition.
Lucky for you there are tools such as Google Analytics that make tracking, measuring, and optimizing data easy. There are also paid options you can look into. The important thing is to make sure you’re using data to drive conversions.
Need help with local inbound marketing?
Our local SEO services put you right in front of your customers so they can increase your revenue. We won’t just focus on your website. We will build relevant back links from local business directories, existing and past clients, trade associations, and press releases from many local news sources.
Owner and Chief Marketing Officer, Jason Hall, and his team specialize in creating brand awareness / traffic and lead generation / marketing funnel and conversion optimization, while utilizing the appropriate marketing channels available within your industry.
With diverse clients throughout the world, Jason’s team is well connected within many industries to assist with your marketing strategies. With no long term contracts and various levels of service, Jason’s team will increase the quality of your online traffic, leads, and sales.
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About the author...
Located in the heart of the Emerald Coast - Destin, FL,founder and Chief Marketing Officer, Jason Hall, and his team specialize in creating brand awareness / traffic and lead generation / marketing funnel and conversion optimization, while utilizing the appropriate marketing channels available within your industry.
With diverse clients throughout the world, Jason's team is well connected within many industries to assist with your marketing strategies. With no long term contracts and various levels of service, Jason's team will increase the quality of your online traffic, leads, and sales.
Request a digital marketing strategy session today and we'll show you what you've been missing!