Every small business owner wants to know: How to Promote Your Small Business Locally, without a massive budget and even larger time investment! It’s not as hard as you think as long as you follow these 6 steps. In the end, your business will reach local customers, impact your local community, and attract more attention than your competitors.
Follow these 6 simple steps to promote your small business and become top-of-mind for local consumers.
1) Update Your Google Business Profile Weekly
You’re welcome to read more about how to setup your Google Business Profile on our post 13 Ways to Improve Local Ranking on Google. Once you have claimed your profile you’ll want to regularly do the following tasks.
- Ask for Feedback and Respond – Put a link to your GBP on email signatures, add a QR code that links to your GBP on business cards, brochures, flyers, and stickers.
- Upload Photos and Videos – NO STOCK IMAGES! Upload real photos of the outside, inside, parking lot, intersections, products, and projects. One business created a video of the walk from the parking lot to the business entrance.
- Add Updates – Regularly announce offers, events, and holidays specials. Even if you don’t run specials or sales, communicate upcoming events, and holiday hours.
Regular use of Google Business Profile is by far one of the best ways to learn how to promote your business locally – for free!
2) Engage Your Local Chamber Monthly
Just about every city and county in the US has a local Chamber of Commerce. Find your by checking with your Town or City Clerk. Once you find your local chamber, do the following each month to bring attention to your business.
- Engage their social media channels – Comment, share, like and engage with the content. Don’t sell, just add value!
- Become a Member – There is a fee to become a member, however, that will give you access to member discounts, and provide a link back to your website.
- Host an Event – Most chambers will have monthly or quarterly networking events for members to discuss business. Make sure you are on the list to host an event at least once a year.
Engaging your local chamber of commerce online and in-person will help promote your small business locally, and build relationships with other business owners.
Those relationships will open up opportunities to partner with them and cross-promote your business to their customers.
3) Consistency Run Local Advertising
Local advertising can be done across different channels like radio, television, online, and print. Which channel you choose will depend on your goals and your audience. And just because you’re a local small business doesn’t mean you don’t want to reach tourists and other visitors who are only temporarily in your area.
Learning how to promote your small business locally with advertising can overwhelming. Here are 3 local ad platforms to help you get started running a local advertising campaign.
Recommended Small Business Advertising Platforms
- AdCritter – Probably the easiest platform to start running Internet, TV, and Digital Billboard advertisements.
- Ripl – This platform is built for small businesses to easily and effectively scale and optimize paid social media campaigns.
- OneLocal – Great options for a comprehensive digital advertising campaign that covers both search, social, and display ads.
The key to running to running any local ads campaign is remembering to identify and target your unique audience. Then narrow that down to your business location, and any location where customers might come from.
4) Run Giveaways and Contests Quarterly
Running giveaways and contests are a sure way to promote your small business locally across all marketing channels. Once you figure out the details of your giveaway or content, you can build a blog post or web page for it, promote it on social media, and create ads to drive more awareness.
Giveaways and contests require 2 core elements. The goal, and the prize. The goal can be as simple as building an email newsletter list by 50. And in order to get people to join your email list, you giveaway a prize to one random subscriber.
Giveaways be just like a raffle. Where the consumer is passive in just liking, subscribing, or following your business online. A content is more active. For example a Halloween Costume Contest can award a prize to a winner. However, the contestants need to do something more, like upload a picture of them wearing a costume in your store.
To make this process easier, here are 3 giveaway platforms your small business can use to help run the campaign.
Recommended Giveaway Platforms
- Woorise – Easily create viral giveaways & contests, landing pages and engaging forms such as surveys and quizzes.
- ShortStack – Create customizable contests, sweepstakes, quizzes, hashtag giveaways, comment-to-enter contests, landing pages, pop-ups, and more.
- Rafflecopter – Select your prize, choose your entry methods, and start collecting entries.
5) Send Direct Mail Monthly
Direct mail campaigns is one of the most reliable ways to promote your small business to local consumers. For the consumer, no technology is required, and it is guaranteed to reach their mailbox.
The challenge is keeping track of the effectiveness of the campaign. This is why Direct Mail is the perfect opportunity to send coupons that are exclusive to Direct Mail customers.
To make monthly direct mail campaigns possible, you’ll need help. Below are 3 direct mail platforms you can use to help you design, and deliver those mailers.
Recommend Direct Mail Platforms
- Mailjoy – A DIY tool to design, mail, and track personalized postcard and letter campaigns.
- PostcardMania – Create direct mail postcards and campaigns that target customers who may also see your digital advertisements.
- Amazing Mail – Direct mail marketing service will print, address, stamp, and mail your cards with durable coating and postage included.
6) Hire Local Marketing Experts
When it comes to a broken pipe, we hire a plumber. When our computer no long works, we hire an IT person. So why not hire local marketers to help promote your local small business?
Many times you can hire a local marketer for a single project. However, what is more effective is to commit to a longer monthly marketing campaign. Longer campaigns allow you to measure the results of your marketing over time.
Services like Local SEO take time, but can reap long-term benefits for local businesses. Think about engaging a local marketer or agency. Consider hiring a consultant or agency that works best for your local small business. Below are a few agencies we recommend.
Recommended Local Marketing Agencies
- Sterling Sky – One of the best local marketing agencies on the planet. Joy Hawkins and her team are top-notch marketers.
- Claire Carlisle Marketing – Clair helps small businesses get more lovely customers, sell more good things, and do better at digital marketing.
- Thrive – Thrive is a full-service digital marketing agency that include consulting and management options.
Promote Your Small Business
Here are the key action items to start promoting your business locally today.
- Get on Google Business Profile, in fact, download their app.
- Regularly engage your local chamber or business network.
- Always be advertising to local consumers online.
- Hire an expert to help you get it done.
Now go and get started promoting and growing your business. Your family and your community need you to succeed and are ready to help!