Although there are often valid reasons to promote your business to a national or worldwide audience, you can enjoy numerous advantages by focusing on neighborhood marketing and restricting your efforts to the local area. Here are six of them.
1. You Can Build Trust in the Local Market
Some people may understandably hesitate to deal with companies that don’t have local knowledge when addressing certain needs. Others simply prefer to work with businesses in their neighborhoods because there is a familiarity there.
You’ll also often find that local expertise leads to more sales. Maybe you have a gardening business. If so, you’re almost certainly better equipped to advise someone about which plants thrive in the local climate than a company where the staff has no firsthand knowledge of the area’s conditions. People will trust what you suggest because you live where they do and can use that experience to back up your tips.
Localized content also provides tremendous opportunities to appeal to the audience. You can fill your blog with posts that are relevant to the area’s residents or create dedicated landing pages for the main cities or towns you serve. Including local details, such as landmarks, street names or historical facts about the place, helps make the material even more specific.
2. Customers Will Spend More to Support Local Businesses
It’s becoming substantially more popular to spend money at nearby businesses. Many people prefer to shop locally when possible, and they don’t mind paying more to do it.
An emphasis on neighborhood marketing could increase interest in your products within the target audience. You could also see an associated boost in profits. Tap into people’s desire to buy local by using signs or door stickers that inform them you’re a neighborhood business.
Another possibility is to promote any products you sell — whether bars of soaps or jars of preserves. Doing that could appeal to visitors or people who want local gifts. Even if you’re a service-based business, it could be worth making an exception if you have existing local partnerships that would provide mutual benefits. For example, if you operate a veterinary office, you might start selling an animal calendar featuring snapshots from a local photographer.
3. Getting Started Is Easy and Accessible
If you have not previously focused on neighborhood marketing, you might believe it’s too late or overly complicated to start. The reality is that investing in local marketing is accessible, and it may merely involve tweaking some resources you already have.
For example, verifying your business presence on Google and Yelp! will ensure that people have the right information when searching for your organization. Then, they’re more likely to visit your enterprise or at least feel confident about doing business with it. You can also edit pages on your website to emphasize a local focus.
Another option is to start an online newsletter. Use it to highlight your local presence and explain why you’re a smart choice for the area’s residents. Offering people a contest entry in exchange for providing an email address is an easy way to encourage their engagement. Plus, the prize could be something you sell, helping participants get acquainted with your offerings.
4. People Are Eager to Review Businesses Near Them
One of the most straightforward ways to move forward with neighborhood marketing is to provide a way for people to leave reviews about their experiences. Doing this is usually as simple as getting set up on the platforms where users often look for and post reviews. Learn what you need to do to have a verified business on those sites.
Then, encourage people to post there with their thoughts. You might even offer them a discount on a future visit after sending proof of their review. This is a low or no-cost approach that could be well worth your while. A 2020 survey about local consumer reviews found that 72% of respondents had written reviews for businesses in their area during the last year. Another 87% of people said they looked at online reviews for local businesses in that period.
A related statistic from the study was that 93% of people used the internet to find a local business in the last year. More than one-third of respondents said they did that daily. Those statistics are a strong reminder that review sites should only complement — not replace — other parts of your company’s online presence, such as its website and social media pages.
5. You Can Emphasize Community Involvement
Investing in local marketing gives you excellent opportunities to become more prominent in your community. For example, you could show off your branding, logo and name by sponsoring a large event. Some of these gatherings let you operate a booth or have your business information appear in a printed program that attendees will take home and may keep forever. All these perks help strengthen your brand and make potential customers more likely to notice you.
If you know artists in the area, consider partnering with them to display their work in your building’s windows. That option beautifies the space and strengthens your local connection. One possibility is to start a program where you show the artwork for a couple of months before swapping it out with something different. Then, residents become more familiar with local talent, and you can position your business as a supporter of the arts.
Consider how you might give back to your community, too. You don’t want to give people the idea that you’re only doing something good for others to draw attention to your business. However, there are effective ways to subtly promote your name. For example, you could wear branded T-shirts while doing a roadside cleanup or maintaining a public garden.
6. People Find It More Convenient to Shop Nearby
Most people would rather do business with the organizations closest to them rather than traveling long distances to get what they need. Consumers who live in the area will be more likely to return if they have good experiences, too.
Those are some of the reasons why people use the “[type of business] near me” search query so frequently. For example, if they can find a particular kind of pet food at your store rather than buying it from outside the area, they can save on shipping costs and take the product home with them after their visit rather than waiting for it to arrive.
Improve your local marketing efforts by calling out specific in-demand items that you carry. Maybe people in your area are on a wheatgrass kick. If your health food store stocks it in a powder and juice form, mention that in your advertising. Many consumers assume what they need is not available locally, and the only option is to shop online. You can prove them wrong by highlighting what you offer.
Increase Your Neighborhood Marketing Efforts
These six reasons show that the best approach is not always to market your company to as many people as possible. That doesn’t mean you should halt efforts to target regional, national or international audiences. However, having a local focus could lead to surprising, welcome results that encourage people to choose your enterprise over others that are not in the immediate area.