3 Ways to Ramp Up Marketing for Your Local Business

Are you ready to ramp up marketing for your local business? Today we’re sharing three tips to get you started.

1. Review Your Local Listing Information

List your small business on yp.com
Don’t forget to add your business to yp.com and other listing sites!

The easiest way to get found online is by checking that your business is listed in sites like Yelp, YP.com, Yellowbook.com and SuperPages.com. These major sites rank well in search engines like Google and can help send customers your way.

If you are not listed on those sites, you should submit your information to get listed as soon as possible. If you are already listed, check to make sure that all of the information is accurate. Especially if you have moved locations or changed phone numbers at any time in the past.

According to a survey conducted by Constant Contact, 50% of small businesses polled have seen inaccurate information in their listings.

To understand how inaccurate listings can impact your ability to drive sales, consider this scenario:

A potential customer searches for your business online and finds your address in Yelp. However, the address listed is inaccurate and the potential customer ends up at the wrong location.

This will not only cause frustration for the customer, but he or she is likely to then just visit another business that is close by. If your business information had been accurate, you would have had a new customer!

Don’t allow your potential customers to visit competitors. Instead do a quick check to make sure that all of your listings are up to date with accurate information.

2. Ask for Online Reviews

A 2013 study by research firm, Dimensional Research, found that 90% of consumers polled were influenced by positive reviews they read online.

Additionally, 86% said that negative reviews  had influenced their buying decisions.

restaurant review example form yelp
Ask your customers to leave you positive reviews on sites like Yelp!

This means it’s important to gather up as many positive reviews for your local business as possible.

You can do this by offering a special discount for everyone who leaves you a positive review. You don’t need to offer a discount though. Simply asking your customers to leave you a review can work.

You can:

  • Send an email to customers asking them to leave you a review
  • Put a place card on your tables or near your register advertising that you’re on review sites
  • Let your staff know that they should mention review sites to happy customers
  • Link to review sites from your Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts

It’s possible even if you provide the highest quality service and the best products that a negative review or two will get posted. In this case, many review sites, like Trip Advisor, will allow you to respond to the negative review. If given the option you should respond in a professional manner.

If you are consistently providing excellent service and great products it’s unlikely that you will end up with more bad reviews than good ones. If you do end up with a lot of negative reviews it may be the spark you need to re-evaluate certain aspects of your business.

If you have 30 positive reviews and 1 negative review, don’t sweat it too much. NBC Chicago found research that shows “95% of review readers become suspicious when only positive reviews are available.”

3. Produce Great Content for Social Media Marketing

You may be wondering how your local business can compete for attention against the giants on social media. The answer is simple: produce great content.

The big brands may come up with fancy graphics, but you can win over the local crowds with your charm.

Share pictures from your business throughout the day to capture social media attention. You can take fun pictures of your products, have your staff pose for silly (or serious) photos, share daily specials and more.

example of a restaurant's daily special

You can even ask your customers to take pictures during their visits and upload them to your social media profiles.

Content doesn’t have to be expensive, you just have to find the time to create it.

For more marketing tips check out our post on using the 80/20 rule to drive mores sales.

Are you ready to explore financing options to expand your business? ARF Financial is a lender you can trust. We have a quick and simple funding process. Contact us today to learn more.