There are many resources that will tell you how to market an online business, but what is the best way to get your brand known if you own a physical store? How can you get the local community to become aware of your business and let them know where you are located?
Take Part In Community Events
Most communities hold events of various types. It could be a fun run, a trade fair, a carnival or any one of many other events. Whatever your local community is doing you should get involved. If they hold a charity event, for example, be the business that is displayed as giving a portion of each sale to the chosen charity.
There are many ways you can show your business at local events, such as banners, printed gazebos, and inflatable archways to name just a few. There are more great ideas at eventdisplay.com.au homepage, and once you have purchased these they can be used again and again. It’s an investment well worth making.
You could even organise an event yourself. There are always local charities that would welcome some extra cash. If you set up a fun run that bore your business name, it could become an annual event that both you and local charities could benefit from.
Sponsor A Local Team
Sponsoring a local team is a great way to get your business name seen and will help the players at the same time. Just think how many of the local community will attend a local football match for example, and you will realize just how many will see your brand on the football strips every time they play.
Many communities have teams for various different sports, and there will be choices apart from football if you have an interest in another sport.
Word Of Mouth
Word of mouth can be more powerful than any other form of advertising. People like to use places that have been recommended to them and as long as you provide an excellent customer service that is exactly what will happen.
You can set up schemes where the person making the recommendation gets a discount off their next purchase. These are quite simple to administer and can produce many new customers.
Remember, if something goes wrong with a product you have sold or a service you have provided, the customer will tell everyone they know within a few days. Humans have a habit of spreading tales of woe more than they do tales of joy. You, therefore, need to try and encourage them to pass on details of your brand when they have had a good customer experience too.
Listen To Customers Feedback
You should always listen to customer feedback regardless of if it is good or bad. At the end of the day, without them, you have no business so what they think really matters. If you have a website, encourage them to share their experience with your business on there, or even on social media.
Even for physical businesses such as stores or restaurants, social media is a powerful promotional tool. It is often where feedback is given, so make sure you read what customers have said. Make all your responses positive, even if they are making a complaint.
Listening to what your clients have to say, and acting on it where possible, will help to build trust in your brand, and then more word of mouth recommendations will happen automatically.
Have Happy Hours
A happy hour where everything is sold a little cheaper is not an idea that is restricted to bars, cafes and restaurants. Any business can do it. If you have a happy hour once a month for instance and serve drinks and snacks to all that attend, after a couple of times, this could become so well known that your business could do more sales than for the whole of the rest of the week.
You only have to offer a small discount at these times, as people will buy things they would not normally just because they are a little cheaper.
Advertise Locally For More Coverage
Adverts in local newspapers and magazines tend to be quite inexpensive. Some people will not buy or use a service until they are sure the business is there to stay. Seeing your name locally will let them know that you intend to stay, and then they are more likely to become customers.
You could also get the local paper to do a news item on your business. If there is a special product you sell, or there is something else newsworthy about your business, get them to interview you. Remember, they are always looking for things to fill their pages, and if they think it will be of interest to their readers, they usually do this for free.
Social Media Groups
If there are local social media groups, joining them is a great way to get your business known. As a physical business, you still need to promote yourself on social media and local groups are a great way to do this.
Every business should have a presence on social media platforms, even though they can be time-consuming to be effective. Being in local groups could reduce the amount of time you need to dedicate to social media, as they will be more targeted at the customers you are trying to attract.
You could set up a local business group on somewhere like Facebook or Twitter. This would help all business involved and you could also include local schools, charities and churches to get the biggest audience possible.
Promotion Is The First Step To Success
Promotion is only the first step in making a local business a success. Once customers start coming through the door you have to make them want to come back again.
That means that the products you sell or the service you provide cannot be below standard. Your customer service must excel at all time, and then those customers will become loyal to your business and in the long-term that is what you need to happen.