3 Marketing Strategies that Make a Small Local Business Look Big Online
As an entrepreneur with a small local business or startup, it may feel like it's hard to compete online with big national companies. But what you might not realize is that your smallness could be your strength, allowing you to really target your local customers while your rivals are marketing to a much broader audience.
Here are three tactics that will help make your online presence look big to local customers.
1. Optimize Your Content for Local Search
Many people don't realize that their social media marketing updates and profile pages can be optimized to show up for people searching in their local area. This applies to both searches that occur on the social platforms themselves as well as searches that occur on Google, because Google's algorithm includes “social search" which enables your social media content to be found in online searches by people who are connected to you or your brand's social profiles.
To better optimize your social media to be found by people in your area, include the names of the cities, counties, or neighborhoods that your business serves in your social media profile and “about us" sections, tagged in social media posts, and as hashtags in social media posts.
Along the same lines, optimize your website for local search by incorporating the names of localities you serve into the content of your website. From about pages to product or service pages to blog articles, nearly every page of your website can be optimized for local search. In doing this you are giving search engines the information they need to serve your website up when people in your area are looking for a business like yours.
2. Use Your URL to Show Where You Represent
Even your website's URL can be used to help you build brand awareness within the locale your business serves and get found in online local search. For instance, you can incorporate the name of the city or county where you do business into your domain name a la richmondVApainter.pro.
Another way to leverage your domain name is by opting for one of the newer top-level domain endings to set your brand apart. For example, you could use a ccTLD (a URL ending that represents a specific country), to further show off your locality (e.g., BrisbanePainter.com.au). You could also end your localized URL with a TLD that represents your industry—like .PET, .ORGANIC, or .ARCHI—to quickly show off what you do and where you do it.
In addition, you can purchase multiple domains, including domain names that incorporate the names of one or several of the areas your business serves, and redirect them to your website. Alternately, you can create subdomains for the various places you serve that direct to different landing pages for your website. Learn more about using multiple domains for your website.
3. Add Local Flair to Your Marketing Materials
Unlike larger rivals whose marketing is needs to appeal to people across a large region or even the whole nation, you can add local flair to your email marketing or social media marketing increase engagement with people in your area. After all, you know the local lingo, the local jokes, what the local folks care about. Adding information about nearby activities, community projects, charitable give backs, and local business promotions gives your audience more reasons to pay attention or share your content with other people in the area.
Regardless of channel, by optimizing all the digital marketing copy for local search and your local audience you make it more likely that people in your area will find your content online and find it relevant. Not only can it make your brand more attractive to members of your target market, it represents a distinct advantage that your competitors may not be able to replicate, especially those rivals whose brand marketing must appeal to a larger regional or national audience.