Local businesses have a unique challenge of finding ways to get results from their digital marketing without going over budget. You have so many options when it comes to marketing online including Google, social media, running banners or even video ads throughout the web. Which ones are going to be right for you and which ones are going to get you the best long-term success? This digital marketing tips for local business owners will deinitely help you in your campaign. Whether you’ve been running ads for years or are just getting started, it’s best to get back to basics and follow these steps for a successful online campaign:
1. Start with Google My Business
It doesn’t matter what kind of local business you have, what you sell, where you get leads from or how much your budget is for digital marketing, you need to start with setting up your Google Business Listings. These listings will allow you to show up organically in local searches as well as track how much traffic you are getting from search engines. Consumers interested in your services or products will also be able to get important information and you can also share reviews and content with new visitors.
2. Get Social
Facebook and LinkedIn offer free options to build company pages that rank on search engines and allow you to share content that can generate organic traffic. These sites are great because you can have a strong web presence at virtually no cost. If you want to boost and gain more followers or reach more consumers, then you will have to invest money, but Facebook especially is very affordable. You can also add products to your Facebook store.
3. Invest In SEO
SEO is one of the most important and often overlooked aspects of digital marketing. Why? Because it takes time to do it the right way but without it, your business may not be found by local consumers or your cost per acquisition could go up. For example, if you are a roofer in Boca Raton, in order to get on page 1 of Google you may have to do PPC (Pay Per Click). It’s a great service but the cost per click, not acquisition, could be $10. That’s a lot of money just for a single click. However, with a strong SEO strategy, your company could be ranked on page 1 for dozens of keywords and you do not have to pay for each click. Also, organic traffic converts at a much higher percentage and many consumers prefer contacting companies they find organically rather than via paid ads.
4. Research The Competition For Ideas
Your competition can give you a valuable and easy-to-follow road map when it comes to building your online brand. They’ve invested their time and money trying different things, some with great success and some without. If they are successful online and do not use social media, then it may not be something you invest a lot of time or money into. However, if they post every day, have thousands of followers, create new content to increase engagement and generate real results, then it’s something you need to look into.
5. Start Building Content
Content is something every business needs to invest in. Content can cover a wide variety of things including blogs, press releases, videos, images and so forth. It can be used on your site, social media, in email campaigns, shared on other sites and more. Your content always needs to be strong because it’s how your company introduces itself to consumers.
6. Start Building An Email List
Email lists are extremely valuable to local businesses for two reasons. The first is because it converts very high because the list consists of people who are very familiar with your brand and would have an interest in your promotions. The second reason is because it’s a very cost-effective way to market new promotions and engage the right type of audience.
7. Add Retargeting
Retargeting is another important, and often overlooked, digital marketing service that local business owners need to incorporate into their strategy. If you’ve ever been to a site and noticed that ads from that brand follow you around the web, that’s retargeting. It offers a very high conversion rate and gives consumers a chance to return to your site and make a purchase. Often times, if consumers leave your site quickly, it’s because they had to do something like answer a call or get back to work. Rather than hoping they remember to visit your site again and how to get there, you can make it easier on them by showing them ads encouraging them to get back to your site. You should always invest 10%-20% of your normal ad budget into this service.
8. Keep Up On Your Content
Having great content is important to get engagement up and build interest in your brand as well as your promotions. However, often times what happens is that companies get busy and they forget to continue to invest into new, quality content. Instead they quickly put something together and send out a campaign which leads to lower engagement. Try to avoid doing this and keep a content calendar for every month so that you have new ideas and time to develop them.
Developing a strong digital marketing strategy for your local business is essential, especially if you can generate a lot of interest and sales online. If you are new to the concept then you may want to follow these steps to ensure that you do things the right way and build your presence up effectively, as well as so that it lasts for years.
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George Kocher is a data driven leader with experience building and managing high performance sales and marketing teams. George graduated from Cornell University with a degree in Economica and Management. He went on to work In Investment Banking and Private Equity where he was in charge of growth marketing. He now advises companies on growth and SEO.