Local marketing refers to the marketing strategies a business uses online to get their products or services in front of people in their local area and engage new and potential customers within a specified radius with the intention of turning them into diehard fans. Typically, local marketing is used by businesses that have a physical storefront in their community, such as restaurants, bars, spas, medical offices, and chiropractors.
Since there are many different kinds of marketing that can grow your business, why does local marketing matter? Simply put, it is next to impossible to win over the customers that will sustain your business without utilizing local marketing resources and methods.
3 Trends Impacting Local Marketing
When done right, local marketing can be a gold mine for your business. However, you must be knowledgeable about the current trends driving local marketing so you can focus on the strategies that will work.
Let’s take a look at three trends that are currently changing the face of the local marketing landscape.
Customer reviews are extremely powerful. No one wants to experience buyer’s remorse. People are very motivated by reviews, and actively seek them out before spending a dollar at any business. In fact, as much as 95% of customers read reviews online before they make a purchase. And, 81% of consumers read online reviews for local businesses. Therefore, adding a dedicated system of getting customers to leave reviews for your business is a surefire way to supercharge your local marketing results.
More than half (61%) of all Google searches take place on a mobile device. No doubt, this also applies to customers in your local area.
How can you use this information to inform your local marketing strategy? The simple way to do this is to ensure that your business’ website is fully functional and optimized for use on a mobile device. This means ensuring your website is adaptable to different screen sizes and browsers, as well as having clickable phone numbers for easy contacting. These simple changes can drastically improve your local marketing conversion rates.
3. Customer Expectations
A good product or service isn’t enough to get customers through your door. Their expectations of speed and convenience are higher than ever. A fast-loading website and easy checkout can go a long way toward fulfilling those two expectations. This holds true for local businesses because emphasizing the speed and convenience of your business in your locale will put you ahead of the competition.
3 Local Marketing Channels You Must Master
There are three distinct local marketing channels that, if implemented, will greatly improve your business’ popularity in your local community.
NAP is an acronym for Name, Address, and Phone Number. The premise of this local marketing channel is the idea that your business’ name, address, and phone number should be consistent all over the web from Google to your Chamber of Commerce’s website and local online business directories.
Since search engines like Google value consistency as a way to legitimize businesses, ensuring that these key pieces of information are the same whenever your business is mentioned will help you rise in the local search engines.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) involves helping your website rank on Google for specific search queries and targeting people in your vicinity.
Consider that almost one-third of U.S. online consumers search the internet daily for local businesses, and an additional 16% do so multiple times a week. Adding keywords that feature local flair is a simple way to grab the attention of some of those searches. For example, if you are a dentist in Raleigh, include “dentist in Raleigh” as one of the keywords for your content.
Local sponsorships are another way to boost your business’ local marketing efforts because they help you gain visibility in your market.
There are many options available, but some ideas for doing this include sponsoring local conferences in your industry, purchasing a booth at a local trade show or fair, or sponsoring an hour on a local radio station.
Local Marketing Pricing Strategy
A local marketing pricing strategy includes all the ways a business uses to set the price for a product or service. Getting this number right is important because it can make or break your budget and financial goals, meet your customers’ expectations, and keep yourself competitive with other businesses.
Examples of the best pricing strategies are:
- Price skimming
- Penetration pricing
- Competitive pricing
- Premium pricing
- Loss Leader pricing
- Psychological pricing
- Value pricing
Learn more about these types of pricing strategies!
What Is Geotargeting?
Geotargeting uses location data to reach relevant shoppers using digital marketing campaigns, such as local pay-per-click marketing. It works for businesses by providing the best service possible for your target audience through “near me” queries.
The four best geotargeting tips are to:
- Research local keywords.
- Prioritize specific locations.
- Target events and venues.
- Refrain from creating competing campaigns.
Learn more about how to make use of geotargeting tips!
How to Rank for “Near Me” Searches
An example of a “near me” search is when someone types “clothing boutique near me” into their search bar. There are many ways to rank for “near me” searches. They include relevancy, distance, and prominence.
Here are some ways to improve your odds of ranking high:
- Use local keywords in your content.
- Include relevant local links in your content.
- Get cited in local media.
- Make your website mobile-friendly.
Learn more about how to set your business apart with “near me” searches!
Building An Online Presence for Brick-and-Mortar Stores
Knowing how to develop an online presence for your brick-and-mortar store can significantly boost your business.
To be successful at this now and in the future, follow these five communication strategies to move your shoppers forward in their buying journey:
- Make it easy for your customers to contact you, and engage with you on social media.
- Prioritize your response times with your customers to show your dedication to their needs.
- Drive customers to your store, both online and in-person, by developing a loyal relationship with each other via digital marketing and social media.
- Whether in person or virtually, be available in your physical store to give your customers a convenient and personalized experience.
- Follow up every shopping trip with a conversation that includes gratitude for their visit and a discount for a future purchase.
Learn more about how communication strategies can improve customer satisfaction!
What Is Cross-Selling?
Cross-selling is a proven technique that boosts sales by encouraging current shoppers to purchase related items in addition to their original selections.
Review these four cross-selling examples:
- Solve a problem by suggesting they purchase an additional item (a screen protector, for example).
- Create a bundle (or package) of related items to up the perceived value.
- Limit your suggestions by keeping them relevant and personalizing each one.
- Use data such as surveys to learn more about your buyer, what they want, and what will persuade them to buy.
What Is Omnichannel Marketing?
Omnichannel marketing uses both online and offline strategies to give a seamless experience, from the first stage of the customer journey to the last. This comprehensive user experience considers user experience, product knowledge, and a consistent core message.
You can build your omnichannel marketing strategy by:
- Collecting and analyzing customer data.
- Keeping your team informed on the optimized message.
- Personalizing and optimizing your approach to reflect consumer behavior.
Learn more about why omnichannel marketing reaches modern consumers better!
What Is Local SEO?
Local SEO improves websites so they can be more easily found by nearby customers.
Getting to the top of the search results list can be done by following these five steps:
- Completing your business information on Google My Business.
- Verifying your locations in Maps.
- Updating current hours of operations.
- Managing and responding to customer reviews.
- Adding high-quality photos to your listings.
Learn more about how to optimize your local SEO listings!
Winning leads for your business is a convenient way to find and interact with potential customers.
This is effective when you do these three things:
- Be where your customers are looking by optimizing your online presence.
- Boost your reputation by collecting and responding to online customer reviews.
- Convert your website visitors by making it easy and enticing to make a purchase.
Learn more about how to win leads for local businesses!
Google Local Services Ads
Google Local Services ads are pay-per-lead ads placed at the top of Google search results. If you have a business license in your state, have valid business insurance, and meet certain category requirements, then you’re eligible to buy ad space. Take it a step further and apply for a Google Guarantee to get endorsed by Google, which goes a long way in giving potential customers greater trust in choosing your business above your competitors.
Ultimately, every business is unique and your local marketing strategies should reflect which methods are best based on your product, service, and industry. The only way you’ll know that is by constantly measuring and improving data-driven decisions. Doing so will allow you to adjust your local marketing based on facts. Once you are committed to doing that, the sky’s the limit for growing your business.