So you made the leap and started your own business. To survive, you’ll need ways to increase your clientele, but how does a geographic focused startup reach its target audience and position itself on an already competitive map? says that digital marketing offers several strategic opportunities for small organizations to promote and establish themselves in a local community
- Pay-Per-Click Marketing
- Encourage Phone Calls
- Give customers the opportunity to instantly call before visiting, then use that call to get them through the door. Take this a step further by launching call-only ads on mobile devices, which use “click-to-call” as the main CTA.
- Obsess over Negative Keywords
- You don’t want to pay for unqualified and irrelevant clicks. Monitor the queries that are triggering your advertisements and add negative keywords, which will trigger your ads to NOT show.
- Optimize Landing Pages
- When they do click, you want your potential customers to stay on your site. Make it easy for them to learn more about your company by closely aligning your landing page copy to your ads and keywords. This is called “message match.” When your message matches the searcher’s intent throughout the conversion path, you’re more likely to meet the desired goal.
- Test, Analyze and Edit Repeatedly
- Test your strategy and analyze the results of each campaign, including how prospects are responding to the ads. With these insights, you can determine what works, what doesn’t and how to improve new campaigns.
- Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Ensure name, address and phone number (NAP) consistency on your website and local and trade specific directories. Claim your Google and Bing business listings and keep them up-to-date.
- Include specific words associated with your local area on your website in key positions like page titles and header tags.
- Develop inbound links with varied anchor text that combines the keywords you’re targeting and the locations you’re interested in.
- Generate and encourage online reviews and ratings (see tip #4!).
- Social Media Marketing
- Find out where your audience is most active, then integrate it into your robust social media strategy. Keep in mind that the big guns—Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn—are built for different audiences.
- Develop the different personas you’ll be speaking to. These personas provide direction on the language, message and imagery need to effectively reach each audience.
- Develop a plan for each platform. While it’s important to have an overall strategy aligning the networks, it’s also important to have detailed execution plans for each one, including the persona, message, imagery, timing and budget.
- Encourage Positive Online Reviews and Address Negative Ones
- Engage Happy Customers
- Don’t Ignore the Negative (they’re just as important as the positive)
- Keep Close Tabs on Competitor’s Digital Footprints
- Conduct Research
- Analyze Your Findings
- Bring It Full Circle
When it comes to the success and growth of any company, especially in local markets, digital marketing is a necessity. Take small tactical steps to implement these strategies into your marketing plan, and you’ll gain a competitive edge in your local market.
Alyssa Armstrong is a Digital Marketing Specialist at Sparxoo, an integrated digital marketing agency based in Tampa, Florida. At the Xoo, Alyssa works with project teams to develop and implement social, content and digital PR campaigns across channels to cultivate digital communities across brands.