Promoting Local Mobile And Home-Based Businesses
The pandemic has had a massive effect on business in all respects, but one benefit for smaller, locally focused businesses is that customers are opting to support this type of business over the large chain brands which may weather the storm better than a small family run company. Even Google has been advertising the usefulness of Google reviews in promoting brand awareness of small local businesses, a sign that they are aware of this consumer shift in purchasing priorities.
There has always been a drive for small businesses to get more attention, especially at Christmas, and the pandemic has introduced the idea of shopping locally to more people, not just for gifts but for services, food and other day-to-day needs.Whether you're after a plumber, mechanic or crafter, people are looking locally first, leaving the well-known chains as a last resort.
Encouraging your customers to leave a Google review is a great idea.It used to be the case that some virtual and home based businesses did not end up being featured in search engine results because of the lack of a visible, physical address. While it appears to still be the case that businesses with a publicly listed premises are favoured, this could change as the new ways of working become the norm.Businesses with lots of recent reviews will appear to Google as active and high quality, so you should see your business being listed higher in the results than businesses who do not have a Google listing or who don't have reviews.
Flyers and other print media are best avoided in the current climate. The elderly and vulnerable may not appreciate unsolicited paper being pushed through their letterbox, and flyers left in public places may also be a potential disease vector, so reduce your budget for these activities and concentrate on digital marketing instead.
A Facebook page is a must for local businesses, and you can grow your reach efficiently by asking customers, friends and family to like your page. You can also run some paid advertising campaigns to promote your products or services. Facebook has a very user friendly advertising platform and the ability to narrow down your campaign to appear to only the people in your area who are interested in your industry or adjacent industries means your investment will give a better return than a blanket marketing campaign.
Word of mouth has always been one of the best ways to get warm leads because people trust the judgement of their friends and family, so you could consider offering discounts for people who bring you new business, or running an introductory offer for new customers to help get the word out there. Facebook is one way of doing this (with like and share campaigns) and if you have a good reputation locally, you're sure to be the first business people recommend when asked.
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