How a Local Business Can Take the First Steps in Online Marketing

June 4th, 2012No Comments »

As a local business, it can be difficult to get started in the online realm with a new marketing tactic. One of the most important aspects of online marketing is getting found in the search engines for local results. It’s important to take care of your SEO, but unless you specifically target your city you still won’t have a lot of luck pulling in local traffic who can visit your store in person. Don’t get me wrong – SEO is still vitally important for getting noticed online, but there are specific ways to get noticed by the local crowd that can really propel your business to the forefront of your regional scene.

Collaborate with Thought Leaders

One technique that will have a lasting impact on the success of your business is building relationships with current thought leaders in your industry. A thought leader is somebody who brings new and innovative ideas to the table in any particular market or industry. An obvious example of this would be somebody like Steve Jobs, who was a thought leader in the computer industry.

Of course, you don’t need to reach that high to take advantage of this technique. Do you currently read any blogs that have a wide following? Those bloggers are thought leaders because they create content that people wish to learn more about, and forming a collaboration with them can bring some of that popularity down on your own business. The easiest way to get in touch with them is to send them an email offering some ideas for a collaboration on online content.

Just be honest and explain who you are, what you do, and what you are trying to get out of this relationship. High profile bloggers receive requests like this all the time and they’ll instantly see through any pretenses that you aren’t doing it for personal gain. What’s the benefit of going this route? Well, for one you can pull in some of their traffic for yourself, but you will also gain a local reputation, a “buzz,” among the people in your area who research a company before making any purchases. Finally, at the very least you’ll get the benefit of receiving a few high quality backlinks to your website or blog.

Work with GPS Marketing Services

GPS is becoming a standard feature in most smart phones, and businesses are using that to appeal to the local traffic in their city or town. A lot of the apps that use GPS make it easy to find local businesses, restaurants, or hotels. There’s a type of mobile marketing for local businesses known as Geo-fencing, in which you create a digital “fence” around your business. When somebody who is subscribed to you enters this perimeter, they will receive a short ad from your business. This is incredibly beneficial because it allows you to appeal directly to an audience that’s already in close proximity to your business.

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