As a local business owner, you’re constantly looking for new and innovative ways to attract customers and keep them coming back for more. In today’s world, where people are bombarded with advertising messages from all angles, it’s important to find unique ways to stand out from the crowd and connect with potential customers. Here are some effective ways to help people connect with your local business:
1. Say it Loud With a Billboard
Many local businesses find success by using billboard advertising. It’s a traditional method that helps create brand awareness, can help you stand out from competitors, and can be used to literally direct people to your business. When they are placed in high-traffic areas, thousands of people a day drive by and see your business name. This goes for cities in the US as well as places in Canada and overseas. For instance a Toronto billboard can communicate about things locally in Canada, or perhaps even direct people back over the border because of its proximity to New York. Plus, many people commute to the city and drive the same route daily. Some even go back and forth over the border each day for work. This means that you have ample opportunity to promote your Toronto business as they are on their way to the city. Or as they are leaving. The nice thing about billboards is that they are great whether people are coming or going.
2. Email Marketing
Owning an email list is more valuable than just having a social media presence alone. Email marketing is a powerful way to stay in touch with existing customers and entice them with special offers and promotions. Collect email addresses through sign-up forms on your website, social media accounts, in-store, or at events. By keeping your own list, you can market to people no matter which social media platforms they are on.
3. In-store Events
Hosting in-store events is a great way to bring in foot traffic and showcase your products and services. Consider hosting a product launch party or a workshop related to your industry. This can be helpful for food brands that want to give customers a taste of a product. You can even offer coupons for those who buy your brand that day.
4. Referral Programs
Word-of-mouth is still one of the most effective forms of advertising. People buy from those they know, like, and trust and referral programs help to create trust. Encourage existing customers to refer their friends and family to your business by offering discounts or other incentives.
5. Loyalty Programs
Rewarding existing customers for their repeat business is a great way to build a loyal customer base. Consider offering a loyalty program that rewards customers with points or discounts for each purchase they make. Coffee shops for instance benefit from punch cards that people can use to earn free products.
6. Local Partnerships
Partnering with other local businesses or organizations can help you expand your reach and connect with new customers. Consider sponsoring a local event or team or collaborating with a complementary business to cross-promote each other.
7. Community Involvement
Getting involved in your local community is a great way to show that you’re invested in the well-being of the area. You could sponsor a local charity event or participate in a community service project.
8. Google My Business
Local businesses need to create a Google My Business listing. When you operate locally, it’s essential for helping others find your business online. You’ll want to include your location, phone number, and website to help others learn about your business and where to find you.
9. Online Reviews
Encourage satisfied customers to leave online reviews on platforms like Google, Yelp, and Facebook. Positive reviews can help attract new customers and build trust in your business.
10. Local SEO
Managing a local SEO strategy is a little different than a global SEO approach. Your website needs your location to be obvious, you’ll need a Google My Business listing and content that speaks to the fact that you are a local business. Optimizing your website and online presence for local search is crucial for being found by potential customers in your area.
11. Social Media Presence
In addition to the previous local options, having a social media presence on one or two platforms can be very helpful. Social media is a great way to connect with customers in your area.
There are many ways to help people connect with your local business. By using a combination of these tactics, you can build a strong online and offline presence and attract a loyal customer base. Keep experimenting with different strategies to find what works best for your business and remember to always put your customers first.