Small Business Saturday: 7 Tips for Hyper Local Marketing

Forbes online reported that according to an Echo Research survey, Small Business Saturday was celebrated by one hundred million people in 2011. Events and promotions across the nation drew shoppers into stores looking for discounts and specials in support of their local merchants.

Hyperlocal marketing, targeting your local neighborhood, has been a successful tool for small business owners to draw in community shoppers since Colonial times in the United States. Today street hawkers and vans with loud speakers driving the streets are not as prevalent as they once were, but the results are still remarkable. Here are some small business tips from PowerSites with ways to capitalize on this special day.
Small Business Saturday: Hyper Local Marketing Tips

Banners and Signs

Make your business stand out among the other retailers on your block. Hang banners, post window signs or use a sidewalk board to show your store is participating in Small Business Saturday. You can use your own signage, or download personalized signage from American Express

Cause Marketing Strategy

Team up with a local organization, non-profit, animal shelter or other cause by making a commitment to donate a portion of sales to support the community.

Build a Web Presence

Posting coupons on your blog or website, advertising specials only-seen-online and other internet marketing tools keep your customers engaged. Tracking visits and purchases helps you tailor your strategy to your local market, too.

Print Advertising

While local news today may not draw readers with stories about the demise of pirates like Blackbeard—like the May 2, 1761 edition of the Boston-Newsletter did—online and print classifieds are still an excellent place to spread the word about your own promotions and special offers. Classified ads are perfect for listing everything from custom drapes to teacup poodles. Potential customers can quickly locate information sorted by category. You can

Email Marketing

Using an email marketing template to contact everyone on your client list saves time and money. This small business tip is perhaps one of the simplest ways to reach out to past customers to extend an invitation to your store.
Small Business Saturday: Hyper Local Marketing Tips

Social Media

Along with your email marketing campaign, spread word of mouth via social media pages like Twitter and Facebook. Post a special discount for followers or Facebook friends to drive traffic into your store. Word of mouth is still the most reliable way to increase traffic. If you’re not sure what to post, you can get free pre-written content for Twitter, Facebook and blog posts from American Express.

Mobile Marketing

Don’t limit yourself to “one-day sales”. You can capitalize on Small Business Saturday traffic by encouraging every visitor to sign up for text alerts and coupons in the future. Have a drawing for a specialty item, a gas card or a store discount pass to encourage participation

Using these small business tips for hyper local marketing will get you on the right path for a successful Small Business Saturday and help you ride the wave into the Christmas season and beyond!

Marked Down Marketing: Promoting Your Business Without Hurting Your Bottom Line

We’ve heard it all before: “You’ve got to spend money to make money.” With a bit of planning, research and ingenuity, however, that saying no longer has to apply to promoting your small business. If your business necessitates an emphasis on hyper local marketing, you’ll also need to employ quite a bit of creativity, but that just makes things all the more fun. Utilize these simple tips to market your business for little or no cost and then use the earned income to fund more ambitious marketing ventures. Lining up these strategies with a large event such as an open house or a large sale will make an even bigger bang.

Participate in Community Events

Most community events are free or low cost. Be aware that sincerity about local positive endeavors is a crucial prerequisite to successful networking and marketing. If you really want to permeate your local radius, keep the goals and purposes of community events in mind when you distribute your business cards and artfully promote your business. You are a key representative of your company and should conduct yourself as such.

Take Advantage of Free Advertisement

Promote Your Business Without Hurting Your Bottom LinePositive word of mouth is one of the most economical forms of advertisement available. Standing out from the crowd, providing a quality service or product, and having outstanding customer service are all things that any business owner striving for success should be doing. Coincidentally, if these things are well accomplished, most customers will find it difficult not to at least give your company a passing mention to an interested friend or acquaintance.

Develop an Online Presence

A professional website is highly recommended for any business and it is nothing you should skimp on. If you don’t already have a website, and aren’t sure where to start, it’s best to pay and have one created for you. PowerSites can help you get started with your online presence.

After launching your website, it’s important to start blogging, explore the internet for other blogs that relate to your business and utilize the available audience. Do this by making relative contributions to the conversation and unobtrusively providing links to your blog. Many businesses also use social media networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter in similar ways. In the event that time or creative writing skills are an issue, consider outsourcing these tasks by hiring a freelance copywriter or content writer.

Implement a Customer Followup Strategy

Email marketing is a great way to promote your business at a low cost. Don’t be a nuisance, but when customers frequent your business, have a contact sheet available or signup form on your website, so that your customers have the option of registering and receiving important news and discounts. Be responsible with their contact information. Avoid flooding their inboxes with spam, but thank them for their business, inquire about their satisfaction with your product or service, and provide a convenient discount for the next time they return.

7 Tips for Local Search Optimization

Local search optimization doesn’t have to be hard. If you can afford a consultant, great, but you don’t need one to make an impact on the local marketplace. Here are a few tips for improving your local search marketing efforts:

1. Be Easy to Find

A newspaper or classified ad seen by thousands of people in your town doesn’t do you much good if you don’t include your phone number, official website URL, product listings and other details. With things like QR codes, it’s easier than ever to let people find you on the web through local print ads, and of course, you shouldn’t even be wasting time on online local marketing without putting your information out there.

2. Focus on the Important Keywords

Keyword stuffing looks bad and it looks desperate. Give people what they’re looking for with sharp SEO for hyper local marketing, but don’t overwhelm them with keyword stuffing. Focus on important keywords.

3. Establish a Visual Presence

Your corporate logo, pictures of your store and videos can all be a tremendous help in establishing your brand. The web makes it easy to advertise with multimedia, don’t ignore the opportunity. Use the appropriate social media channels to expand your reach and communicate with your customers.

4. Check for False Listings

Browse the local phone book and search listing sites to make sure that your information is correct. Check to make sure that you don’t have the same name as some other store in town, and try to establish a distinctive identity in the local community.

5. Keep People Up to Date

Verify all of your listings and keep them up to date. Your Facebook account is doing you no favors if it still lists your old address and website URL.

6. Coupons and Sales Still Work

Many small business owners get so obsessed with web marketing and new developments in local marketing that they forget that the old tricks are still, sometimes, the best. Don’t neglect coupons, and use the web to get them into more people’s hands.

7. Study Your Analytics

And don’t just study them, do something about them. Pursue the marketing channels that are working, fix or drop the ones that aren’t. Analytics aren’t just there as a status symbol for businesses, they are there to let you know what works and what doesn’t. If you’re not adjusting for the data that analytics produce, then why use them at all? Track, study, research and adjust based on the numbers you’re getting.