Large corporations have the massive marketing budgets necessary to promote their products on a global scale.
But with a little ingenuity, digital marketing offers small and medium enterprises the chance to capture their niche markets at a reasonable cost.
With this in mind, here are four digital marketing hacks for local businesses.
Google My Business
Other search engines are available — but for the moment, Google has almost achieved full-spectrum digital domination.
So if you want your business to be seen online, it’s important that you get to grips with the way it works.
Google My Business is a great start — once you register for free you’ve got an instant footprint on the Google network so you’ll appear in Google Search and Maps, allowing customers to find you directly from their mobiles.
If you want to rise up the Google rankings you’ll need to put in a little more effort, but this is a strong first step.
Social media grabs the biggest marketing spend from local companies.
And if you take the right approach you can start a friendly conversation that customers love dipping in and out of.
Share the positive content they create about your business and they’ll share your posts in return.
Video content is particularly shareable but competitions are effective too.
A social media presence doesn’t always directly drive conversions, but it’s a crucial part of a strong sales and marketing cycle.
A high quality website is still a wise investment for a small or medium business.
Social media can take you so far, but only a dedicated website that’s well designed and optimised allows you to exclusively showcase your goods and services, build links and maintain your position in the premier league of search results.
It’s best to find an experienced agency with the requisite web development skills to build a site that’s aesthetically appealing and offers an excellent user experience.
This combination of look, feel and technical capability ensures customers find your site from a range of different entry points and stick around long enough to actually make a purchase.
You can also use analytics tools to constantly tweak and fine tune your site to ensure it remains relevant and features the latest keywords and search terms.
So a strong website is still the heart of your online presence.
Once you spend a little time listening to what local customers search for and keeping up to date with community developments, curate and collate your online content so that it specifically appeals to your target customer base.
And this definitely converts to sales — Google statistics show that 76 per cent of people who conduct a local search on their phone visit a business within 24 hours and 28 per cent convert to a purchase.
With a little effort, you can harness the magic of the web to boost your local business.
These four digital marketing hacks are a great start.
Do you use local digital marketing for business? Share your advice in the comments section.