Local small business marketing has the potential to help neighborhood companies attract customers and strengthen their bottom lines. Retail businesses have a number of cost-effective options for reaching local companies.
With all the talk of the global economy, businesses can take heart in the fact that a great deal of commerce still takes place locally. They just need to market their companies so customers know they are ready to do business.
Online Business Marketing
A website improves the visibility and enhances the credibility of any business, even if the client base is local.
Fewer people are using telephone directories and more people are using search engines to find retailers that offer the products they want. Without a website even local customers will have a hard time finding a nearby business.
To rank high on search engine listings commercial websites must be search engine optimized. They must also have useful, relevant, and well-written content. Websites must be visually appealing and easy to navigate.
Designing and managing a website takes time and expertise. Many communities have marketing professionals who specialize in online marketing for small businesses.
Print and Broadcast Marketing
Even in the age of the Internet, people still respond to advertisements in newspapers and on radio and television.
Local print and broadcast media support local small business marketing by providing cost-effective exposure to a limited geographic area. Businesses can further target their marketing efforts by placing ads in neighborhood papers and in local editions of daily newspapers.
Radio is a good venue for local business marketing because it is less expensive than television. Retailers can target their ads to good prospects by advertising on radio stations whose audiences use their products.
Word-of-mouth is still one of the most effective tools for local small business marketing. Business people can get to know people and expand their network of contacts by joining local business associations and participating in local events.
A local business owner who is involved in the community invites success because people like to do business with people they know.
Businesses can earn a good reputation by sponsoring local sports teams, volunteering for charitable causes, and being good neighbours. Through positive relations with the public, businesses gain name recognition, credibility, and trust—all of which contribute to business success.