How to Effectively Market for Local Businesses

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    Have a local business? A small business? It might be a difficult decision to decide whether to do more online or offline marketing - online being website marketing and social media and other outlets, offline being mailers, newspaper ads, etc. On average, before a consumer will convert with a business, they will find information about your company seven times. These seven times may be from a magazine ad, hearing a promotion on the radio, visiting your website, seeing social media posts, or receiving an email, but seven is the lucky number for consumer interaction to lead generation for service-oriented businesses. Local businesses often don't have a big budget for marketing, so here are a few tips to make the most of your marketing budget to get those seven touches out to your customers:

    Tips to Effectively Market Your Small Business

    Use Social Media to Promote Your Business' Products and Services

    Don't understand it? Think it's too much of a hassle? Don't trust it? Hate to break it to you, but social media works well for any and every business, so use it wisely. Promoting your products and services on social media allows you to directly interact with your customers. You can drive campaigns of themed content, products or promotions through your various social media channels offering coupons, signups or booking that will attract new or returning customers. Utilize hashtags to drive sale content or services from a relevant community. By geo-targeting your tags and hashtags based on region, such as "Indianapolis Flower & Gift Shop", you can further direct your content to targeted areas. Learn more about social media marketing.

    Use Targeted Email Marketing to Keep Your Business' Subscribers Informed

    Send potential customers an email that informs them about your business, offers them promotional deals when they leave your shopping cart, or free white papers, blog posts or other informative content useful to them as a consumer. Email marketing is a great way to get new visitors engaged with your business as well as maintain relationships with existing customers.

    And email marketing is permission based, meaning the recipient has signed up for and therefore want to hear from you!

    Create Instructional Videos to Build Your Business' Credibility

    If content is king and a picture is worth a thousand words, video content can be an invaluable tool for your business. While it can cost a significant sum of money to produce a professional video, the value add to your customers and the trust in knowing that you are an expert in your area of business can be worth the cost.

    If video sounds too challenging, try making slide shows and record a presentation using those. Hint- this is great to share with your customers via all social media outlets and email!

    Continually Create New, Relevant Content For Your Website

    I think it goes unsaid, but it'd be neglectful of me not to mention the importance of continually publishing relevant and new content on your website. If you can write and create the content yourself, it's FREE. Even if writing isn't your strong suit, find a team member or employee who can help out. List blogs, better practices for your industry, infographics and FAQs answering common questions consumers might have are all easy way to generate content. Showing people how to do something is the most powerful way to build trust and demonstrate expertise.

    Ensure Your Business' Website is Optimized

    The faster you can engage your audience in your products and services, the faster they are likely to convert. This means providing a mobile version of your website to your consumers so that they can quickly and easily reach your site from their phones. Marketpath practices responsive design so that no matter the device, a user can quickly and easily engage and convert with your local business. 

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    About the Author

    Emily Oskay Gerrick

    Emily joined the Marketpath team in December of 2014 as a User Experience (UX) Designer. She serves as the product designer for Marketpath CMS, and the lead designer for the Pro Services division. Emily works directly with clients to establish their online marketing goals and outlines any functional requirements the custom website may need before designing client websites.

    Emily obtained her Masters of Science in Information Architecture & Knowledge Management with a concentration in User Experience Design from Kent State University in 2018. She previously attended Purdue University and graduated from Purdue University in May of 2013 with a B.A. in Visual Communication Design and Computer Science. In her free time, Emily enjoys cooking, drawing and designing, traveling the world, and spending time with her family and friends.

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