Whether you own a small business or you’re in charge of marketing for one, the approaches that you use are not necessarily the same ones employed by global corporations. That being said though, you have to compete with other companies and encourage consumers to select your products and services. Creative and budget friendly marketing techniques can help you to do so.
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1. Incorporate Locals
Part of owning a local business is showing the community members that you care about them. Consider incorporating locals themselves into your advertisements. For example, you may feature a well-known individual in the community who endorses your products, or you could hire a local artist to create designs for your advertisements. Both of these strategies help to strengthen your advertisements themselves, and you can also include the fact that the people are from the neighborhood.
2. Appeal to Tourists
When you think of the members of your target audience, you may consider only the people who live in and near the community. However, if you live near tourist destinations or major highways, you might be missing out on business from tourists. Even when you cannot immediately think of the tourism in the area, start to brainstorm. For example, if a tourist hot spot is located an hour or two away from your restaurant, you may want to start advertising your restaurant as a great spot to take a break for people who are traveling to that particular destination.
3. Use Vehicles
As individuals are driving, they are often entirely focused on the road in front of them. Therefore, you have an opportunity to advertise to these individuals with branded vehicle decals. In the event that your business has cars that employees drive around the community, these decals can appear on the back of the vehicles. You can also start to sell the decals in your store. Another option is to provide them on a promotional basis. For example, if customers spend a certain amount of money in the store, you may give them a decal.
4. Check out Theaters
Small Business Trends suggests harnessing the power of your local movie theaters to help you advertise. Plenty of people flock to the movie theaters early in order to see the previews. As a result of this traffic, you can have your advertisement shown during this time. You may wonder what the difference is between advertising at the movies and advertising on television. Keep in mind that many people record their television shows, and some individuals exclusively use streaming services. They may not see your commercials if you put them on regular television.
5. Host Events
Chances are that every day, some people are searching for events taking place in the community. You have the opportunity to leave a positive impression on these individuals when you’re the one hosting the events. Using your business as a space for related events helps to draw traffic to the area. Therefore, you also get to promote your products and services. You could consider free admission to the event to better encourage sales during it.
6. Use Local SEO
Advertising online is virtually a must for businesses the days, but it isn’t enough to only advertise. When you have a small business, the odds are that most of your customers come from the local area. As a result of this fact about your target audience members, you need to use local search engine optimization strategies. If you are talented in the art of SEO, you could then take on the integration of these approaches yourself. On the other hand, you may want to consider investing in a local SEO expert to ensure that your SEO can compete in the marketplace.
7. Have a Mascot
Think about how captivating mascots are and how many types of popular entities use them. Creating a mascot for the store is one way to attract business and to build rapport with customers. You may even want to consider bringing this mascot to life and having an employee dress up in a costume as the mascot. This mascot could greet guests at events or stand outside the door waving to customers on the street. Of course, you will want to integrate the mascot into promotional material as well.
A small business owner should not feel defeated by all of the giants in the marketplace. If you feel this way, know that certain strategies exist that are specifically designed for the marketing needs of your company. In fact, you get the opportunity to connect with your customers in an authentic way and to encourage them to choose your business time and time again.