As a business owner, you may think that some new marketing trends relate to only multination corporations and not your local company. True, there may be some things out of your marketing budget’s reach, but in reality, most of the tools that are rocking the big business world are just as easy for small businesses to adapt.
Strategies like text marketing, using social media platforms, setting up a stand at a local event, creating an e-commerce platform, and making sure your website is mobile-ready can all fit within the tightest marketing budget.
Let’s take a look at some of these marketing strategies local businesses can adopt:
Local Marketing Through Social Media
Social media has a universal reach, but local businesses can use it to enhance their relationship with their community by sharing photos of local customers enjoying products and services. Moreover, businesses are able to create locally-relevant ads on Facebook and easily reach their target audience. This approach not only helps to garner attention for your business, but also opens up a line of communication between your customers and your brand.
Social media has the benefit of allowing customers and clients to share their opinions and give spontaneous feedback. It’s basically a way for your business to collect reviews, which other customers will read and take into consideration before trying out your business for the first time. They can also share photos and promote your products and services if they have a positive consumer experience.
Local Texting Campaigns
Texting is an affordable and effective marketing channel. It’s popular with customers too. Nearly 80% of consumers would like to be able to text a business, according to TextRequest. And texts have a 45% response rate as compared to emails, which have only a 6% response rate, according to a OneReach study.
So, given that it’s certainly a great way to reach customers, here are some ideas for how to make the most out of texting:
- In order to get people interested in your campaign, you should advertise your texting campaign across your other media. Include details on how to join – “Text I LOVE STEAK to 98765 in order to receive coupons and promotions from XYZ Steakhouse” – on your social media pages, your website, email mailing list, in-store signage, and promotional leaflets. Employees should also explain how to join the texting campaign to customers when they enter the physical store.
- Running a sweepstakes with a texting campaign can be a great way to generate leads. Who doesn’t like free stuff? By advertising a giveaway, you can get people to opt in to your texting campaign and increase your customer database.
- Offer exclusive sales, events, and promotions. No matter what kind of business you run, it’s important to reward loyal customers with special privileges. Use your texting program to offer exclusive sales and promotions that are only accessible to your text customers. This gives customers more incentive to become part of the texting campaign.
- Texting is an ideal platform for low-cost still high-quality customer service. You can schedule appointment reminders and alerts in advance. Two-way texting allows customers to reach you quickly and easily at their convenience and solve their urgent cases immediately.
Even local businesses can benefit from developing an online purchasing platform, according to PracticalEcommerce. E-commerce is extraordinarily convenient for customers, as they don’t have to make a phone call or visit your store. They can simply place their order and have it available for delivery or pick-up. Don’t be offended – some clients may be elderly or simply too busy to make it to your store during business hours!
Restaurants can incorporate an online system for reservations to facilitate the process for patrons. By making it easier to make reservations, you can increase the number of reservations your establishment gets and fill in gaps during slow days. Businesses that work by appointment such as doctor’s offices, dentist’s offices, and beauty salons can streamline their booking system by allowing customers to do it online.
Get Your Website Mobile-Ready
Did you know that Google search takes into consideration a site’s mobile readiness when it computes its ranking algorithm? What that means in laymen’s terms: websites that are mobile-friendly come up in a Google search above sites that aren’t. That’s because consumers are increasing their use of mobile in order to do research and make purchases.
In the US, 94% of smartphone users search for local information on their phones. They also expect the mobile site to open quickly and to have an intuitive user interface. You can test if your site is mobile ready with this free test from Google.
Hold Local Events
Don’t focus solely on tech-based marketing! Another way to get in touch with new customers and maintain brand loyalty is to participate in local fairs and events. Renting a stand during a community celebration is an important way to build connections and advertise your business. It’s also an opportunity to have direct contact with people in a more relaxed setting.
You can have conversations about your business with the public, answer questions, and explain the background and philosophy behind your business. Offering free samples of your product or service at an event is often a good chance to promote your brand and get people to try you out.
Use these marketing ideas to attract customers and increase revenue at your local business. Good luck!
Alexa Lemzy is a customer support specialist for TextMagic, an SMS company that specializes in generating business growth through mobile marketing. She spends her days dealing with your issues and questions via the phone, live chat and email. She enjoys connecting with customers and takes pride in using her years of experience and in-depth knowledge of TextMagic to solve problems and help with queries.