Are you looking for local area marketing ideas?
Well, if you’re a local brick and mortar business with a physical location, using as many local advertising tactics that you possibly can is a great idea.
The more creative you can get and the greater the combination of marketing ideas you put together, the higher the chance you will have of attracting customers and foot traffic to your business.
So let’s discuss exactly how to do this.
What Is Local Store Marketing?
Local area marketing is simply the act of marketing your store in and around your physical location, hyper-targeted to your specific locality.
The purpose of it is to generate more foot traffic and sales to your small business.
By doing this type of marketing successfully, your store has the chance of becoming a common, well-know, and frequently-visited destination in your city.
Boosting Your Brand Identity And Keeping Top-Of-Mind At All Times
When done correctly, local area marketing will solidify your brand in the minds of local consumers.
It has the ability to establish an omnipresence for your business that will allow you to be kept top-of-mind whenever locals think of your product or service.
For example: if you are a dentist in a certain city, engaging in effective local store marketing activities will allow you to be the first dentist a consumer thinks of whenever they get a toothache.
This is a powerful benefit to have, as you will likely be the first business they contact to solve their problem.
Understanding Your Community
In order for this to work, you need to understand your surrounding community.
Understanding the culture of your city, the music locals listen to, what they talk about, what they care about, how they dress, etc., will help you to create marketing messages that truly resonate with them.
The better you know your community, the more effective your marketing will be.
Local Store Marketing Ideas
Now that we know what local area marketing is, its benefits, and how we must understand our community in order to make it effective, you must now brainstorm ideas on how to actually utilize it.
There are many, many different ways to market your store locally.
Below, we discuss 15 of these ideas to get your juices flowing.
Idea #1: Local SEO
A local search engine optimization campaign will help you market your business online.
It will allow your business website to show up in Google when a local user searches a keyword such as “your service” + “city”.
Let’s use the example of a dentist again.
Say you are a dentist in Las Vegas.
The idea with SEO is that when a potential patient types in “emergency dentist Las Vegas”, your website shows up first.
This can drive a lot of local traffic to your website and will position you as an authority in the space.
This is one of the great benefits of digital marketing.
Feel free to click the following link if you happen to be in the market for local SEO services in Canada.
With local SEO, your business will also have the ability to show up in Google Maps.
These are extremely high intent users, as some may be looking for directions to the store nearest to them that sells your related products or services.
A lot of business owners ask “is SEO worth it?” Click here to learn more.
Google My Business (GMB)
Your GMB profile is the profile of your business that appears in Google Maps.
If you don’t have a GMB profile for your business at the moment, it is highly recommended that you create one here.
Getting your business listed on local directories such as Yelp, 411, Yellowpages, etc., will expand your web presence and give your business more opportunities to be found by local customers.
Idea #2: Hyperlocal PPC And Paid Advertising
Paid advertising such as PPC and Google Adwords are components of digital marketing that allow you to hyper-localize your marketing.
Meaning, you can market your store to customers within a certain proximity from your business.
If you want to target only online users that live within 2 miles from your store, you can do that.
10 miles of your store?
You can do that, too.
25 miles from your store?
You get the idea.
Idea #3: Create Content About Your Local Area
Create content about local people, places, and things that locals would be familiar with.
The more content you create that locals are familiar with, the more they will resonate with your store and remember you for it.
Idea #4: Local Press Release And Media Outlets
Of course, getting into the local newspaper or radio station is a great idea.
If you’re looking to market to locals – simply appear in places that they read, listen to, or watch on a regular basis.
Idea #5: Social Media
Being active on a consistent basis on social media can do wonders for your business.
Creating shareable content on Facebook that people will engage with and share with their friends is a great way to become a local celebrity.
If you’re creative with what you post, you can gain traction quickly and become well-known in your local market.
Instagram is another great online advertising element to utilize.
Creating local hashtags and tagging your location can get you more visibility in your local market.
Encouraging people to tag their friends or to tag your business in their posts can also lead to a good amount of exposure for yourself as well.
Idea #6: Join Your Local Chamber Of Commerce
Who do business owners hang around with?
Other business owners!
Being in a tight-knit group of other entrepreneurs and local businesses will help immensely when it comes to word of mouth.
There is no better way of doing this than joining your local Chamber of Commerce and getting your networking game on.
Still not convinced? Then watch the video below to discover 5 other benefits of joining your Chamber of Commerce:
Idea #7: Participate In Local Events
Attend and participate in as many local events as you can.
You want to be where your potential customers are.
And if your potential customers are local residents – then go to local events and meet them!
And don’t forget to bring your business cards with you.
Idea #8: Support Buying Locally
Engaging in the “buy local” movement is a smart marketing idea for local business owners.
By supporting other local businesses, chances are that they will feel inclined to reciprocate.
If you scratch their back, they will likely scratch yours.
People also respect the fact that by shopping locally, you are supporting local business owners and families.
This can go a long way and lead to a lot of referrals and word of mouth business.
Idea #9: Local Offers, Discounts, And Promotions
Of course, offering discounts to local residents should be a top priority.
Loyalty cards are great in this regard, as they entice people to become repeat customers and gives them a reason to enter your store again and again rather than your local competitor’s.
Implementing a referral program can also be effective, where you offer a discount for your customers every time they send business your way.
Idea #10: Strategic Partnership With Other Local Businesses
Find a local business that provides a product or service that is complementary to yours.
An example of this would be if you are car detailing shop, then partnering with an auto dealership can be a great deal for the both of you.
You can offer a kickback for every referral he sends your way, and vice versa.
This is a no brainer business deal as both parties can create another stream of income at no extra cost or effort to either of them.
A win-win situation!
Idea #11: Invest In Signage
If you have a physical store location, investing in signage for your business is a must.
Getting the attention of passerby’s and streetwalkers is the “low hanging fruit” for any brick and mortar store.
Invest in channel letters to put atop the entrance of your store.
Putting an a-frame with a creative or funny message on the sidewalk outside of your store can encourage people to take pictures of it and share it on social media with their friends.
If you know your community well (which you should) coming up with a message that will resonate with the locals can be an unexpected yet effective lead generation tool.
Idea #12: Decor That Resonates With Your Community
Speaking of resonating with the locals, having decor on both the outside and inside of your store that is meaningful to your community will also give you some extra points.
A poster on the wall of a local celebrity can be a good start.
Or a photo collage on one of your walls of all of your happy customers.
A national flag if you live in a patriotic city can work well, too.
This will make people feel comfortable in your store and feel as though you understand them (which, again, you do!).
Idea #13: Support Local Causes
Get a tip jar near your check out that supports a local cause.
People will appreciate that you’re asking for tips so that you can donate to the community rather than collecting for yourself.
Being known as a caring store owner goes a long way in turning one time customers into repeat customers and with word of mouth to create new customers.
Also having some sort of deal such as “5% of proceeds go to X local foundation” is great, too.
Giving up some of your revenue to support a worthy local cause is a great way to score empathy points with your customers.
Not to mention the fact that its a good thing to do, regardless.
Idea #14: Host Local Events
We mentioned participating in local events in your community, but what about actually hosting one of these events?
If you joined the local Chamber of Commerce as suggested in idea #6, there will be loads of opportunities for you to become a host.
Doing so will get people into your store, become familiar with what you do, get to know you, and show that you are committed to the community.
Idea #15: Promote Your Store With Local Celebrities
A photo with the mayor can go a long way.
Or with any sort of well-known individual within your community.
Nowadays, social proof is everything.
If you can get a local celebrity to visit your store and show that they had a positive experience with your business, local residents will be much more inclined to visit you in person themselves.
Local Area Marketing: The Conclusion
We here at Active Business Growth work with local businesses on a daily basis.
We’ve helped implement and advise clients with these exact local store marketing tactics…
We know that they work.
Whether you decide to join your local Chamber of Commerce, implement a PPC campaign, or create a strategic partnership with another local business – just be sure to take action!
We hope this article created value for you and your business.