3 ways digital can help your business with local area marketing
Learn how to reach customers in your local community with digital marketing ideas for small businesses. To leverage the power of advertising locally to help your business thrive.
When you run a small business, the right digital marketing strategies can help ensure long-term success. Identifying the marketing ideas that will reach your target audience, however, is sometimes tricky.
If you want to reach customers in a specific geographic area, one of the most powerful marketing ideas for small business is to run a local area marketing campaign.
What is local area marketing?
Local area marketing (LAM) describes promotional activities that target customers within a specific geographic area. It’s often associated with the type of advertising a business might do in the local community around their shop or physical business premises.
In the context of digital marketing, local marketing might sometimes be referred to as local digital marketing. For example, if you own a barbershop in Launceston, it wouldn’t make sense to target online ads to the whole of mainland Australia. Instead, you’d invest in advertising locally.
Small business ideas like this help to build your brand reputation and can offer strong returns on investment. Think you’d benefit from a more targeted approach to advertising locally? Here, we’ll explore 3 ways you can leverage local area marketing ideas in Australia.
3 digital strategies for local area marketing
Small business ideas for advertising once involved running ads in newspapers and posting leaflets in letterboxes. You may still choose to advertise in this way. But the world has changed and there are new marketing ideas that could help your business grow.
Considering digital solutions as a small business is now more important than ever. This is because your customers are turning to search engines and social media platforms to find brands like yours online.
Local digital marketing campaigns can be designed to help guide these customers to your business from search engines like Google and websites like Facebook.
Top small business ideas to try:
- Search engine optimisation (SEO)
- Pay-per-click advertising
- Social media marketing
Keep reading to learn more about each of these digital marketing strategies in more detail.
1. Search engine optimisation (SEO)
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is the process of updating your website to help it rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs). Local SEO is a subset of SEO involving several strategic efforts emphasising a website’s visibility in local searches.
With local SEO, rather than simply focusing on keywords related to your business (i.e. ‘barbershop’), you’ll also factor in specific locations to drive more targeted traffic. For example, instead of targeting just ‘barbershop’, you may target ‘barbershop Launceston’).
How to implement local SEO into your digital marketing strategies
Here are some tips to consider when putting in place a local SEO plan.
- Claim and verifying your business’s Google My Business (GMB) listing.
- Use local keywords in your website's meta content, copy, and URLs.
- List your business in verified online directories and with consistent business information in all places (name, address, phone number and so on).
- Encourage reviews and testimonials from past customers. They will increase visibility in search to help potential customers find you.
- Partner with other local businesses to create links between your websites.
- Make sure your website is optimised for mobile.
2. Pay-per-click advertising
Another form of digital marketing for small businesses is pay-per-click (PPC). This strategy involves paying a fee each time someone clicks on an ad online.
Rather than having to earn visits to your website through organic (free) methods, PPC allows you to jump to the queue. With Google Ads, for example, you can create text-based ads that shoot your business to the top of search engine results pages. You can also spread your messaging through multiple social media feeds with dedicated adverts.
To be even more targeted with your messaging, you might even develop multiple versions of your ads to take advantage of highly precise audience targeting tools.
Top benefits of adding PPC to your local area marketing strategy:
- Target customers in your area, significantly improving relevance of your ads and the chance of attracting paying customers.
- Help increase your businesses’ visibility in local search engine results, making it easier for nearby customers to find you.
- Control your digital marketing spend, as you only pay when someone clicks on your local advertisement.
How to implement PPC into your local digital marketing strategies
Things to consider in how you implement PPC advertising for your business include:
- Keyword research to understand what potential customers are searching for.
- Geotargeting to target where you want your ads to appear.
- Creating compelling and relevant and localised ads.
- Optimising the web page that your ads are directing potential customer to.
- Reviewing performance and adjusting the campaign to get the best results for your business.
3. Social media marketing
Advertising your business on platforms like TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn is an excellent way to reach and engage with customers online.
Top benefits of including social media in your local area marketing strategy:
- Social media platforms let you build relationships with local customers, fostering a sense of community and loyalty.
- Sharing content relevant to local customers helps you raise awareness of your business and what you can offer customers.
- Social media platforms offer location-based targeting options that help you reach customers in specific areas with targeted ads.
How to add social media to your local digital marketing strategy
Things to consider in how you develop a local social media strategy for your business include:
- Choose the right platforms: Focus your efforts on what’s popular with your target audience.
- Create localised content: Develop locally relevant content, be it local news, or information on what you offer.
- Engage with the community: Be active in local conversations, respond to comments and messages.
- Use location-based targeting: When running social media ads it will help you get the most from your marketing budget and reach more users in your area.
- Encourage reviews and check-ins: Encourage customers to review your business or check in on social media, as this can help increase your visibility and credibility.
- Use local hashtags. Make use of local hashtags to reach potential customers in your area. For example, #SydneyLocal or #ShopSmallSydney.
If you want to take it a step further you can even explore how selling on social media could help boost your sales.
New local area marketing ideas for small business
To evolve your local area marketing campaigns, it’s worth developing good understanding of digital marketing strategies. Keeping across the marketing ideas your competitors are using can also help you consider how to adapt to remain competitive.
Get involved in your community and make use of the many local area marketing tools available. It will help you and your business grow your connection to potential customers in the areas you want to target.