When you’re starting a business, you’re probably thinking big. Targeting a wide audience and international fellow businesses is a great way to pave your way to the top. Nevertheless, starting out with such an ambitious promotional strategy might be too optimistic. As a result, this overzealous beginning might turn out to be a complete branding blank and not hit a single target. Therefore, you should start from the local level.
Visible online and in person
You have to know that your contacts are the connective tissue of your new brand. Even before social media took the most important place in business promotion, creating a network of business associates and clients was the crucial part of every business story. Because of that, it’s vital to be noticeable if you want to gain more trust from your audience. Needless to say, you need promotion in social media. However, adapt those posts to the local audience. The percentage ratio of your posts should be 70%-30% in favor of local affairs.
Moreover, appear on as many live occasions as possible. Be it local sports tournament, open-air markets or gigs, you need to see and be seen.
Local SEO strategy
Having a local SEO strategy is the key to success on the local level. Here, things have to be nudged a bit to get them going. For instance, start with shorter pieces about topics related to your business and try to place them on relevant local websites – a classic content-based SEO strategy. It will result in a large number of backlinks. What’s more, the more local Internet users see you, the more natural backlinks you’ll have. In return, this will translate into a higher number of visits to your website and a higher local conversion rate. Consequently, it will all make both your website and your startup a distinguished local business brand.
Don’t let the previous paragraph lead you down the garden path – don’t base your branding on mere advertising. On the contrary, everything you do has to be at the service of your local community. Only when they see that your business is doing a great job on the local level should they start endorsing you. Therefore, get engaged in local events as much as possible. For instance, offer special deals to local citizens and organize contests that will make your brand resonate in the local community. As for the brand name, you should also make a compilation of business name ideas, so as to choose the most powerful one. When your name perfectly reflects what you do, coming up with a catchphrase is a piece of cake.
While you shouldn’t abandon PC (political correctness) rules, you should react to some open questions on the local level. For instance, no speed bumps in sensitive areas or problems with the water supply system are local affairs that need special attention. By this, we don’t mean using public issues to gain points for your business. Again, the process is quite the opposite. If you fight for the good cause and raise controversy on some local issues, your reputations will grow. A piece brought by the Guardian shows that the owner’s reputation can affect the status of their business.
Collaboration with national brands
As you’ve established the four previous strategies as the pillars of your local business, it’s time to promote on the national level, as well. What’s more, if those previous actions have been done properly, you’ll already be getting different business offers. They will range from collaborations and investments to serious financial opportunities, such as being taken over by a larger business. No matter what course you take here, remember that your local community gave you the initial nudge when you were at the beginning of your business quest.
Your development has to start from your hometown. Except for Web-based, IT-businesses, this is the only way for the majority of businesses. When you’ve mastered all the branding skills on the local level, you can move onto the next stage of your development. Nevertheless, always nurture those special connections with your hometown community and make your business a local household name.
Dan Radak is a marketing professional with ten years of experience. He is currently working with a number of companies in the field of digital marketing, closely collaborating with a couple of e-commerce companies. He is also a coauthor on several technology websites and a regular contributor to Technivorz.
Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.