Good marketing is all about how well you expose target customers to your service. So whether you are looking to promote your business locally or nationally there are a few things to consider.
Finding the right balance between local and national marketing can be difficult. Depending on the service you offer, you may want to market to a specific region and sell more through targeting your advertising budget on that particular market. A national marketing campaign would allow for a message to reach a wide audience, with less contact with potential customers, however a local marketing campaign can allow the message reach potential customers, while also interacting with them.
In terms of creating a national marketing campaign, the internet makes it relatively easy to access a wide and varied audience. Targeting them through your own business’s website and relevant website advertising, social media channels, SEO and PPC advertising, it seems that even a small business has the ability to compete alongside more established brands. However, compared to national marketing, regional marketing can be a lot more affordable for smaller businesses through advertising in regional papers and through well targeted local Facebook adverts. Effectively targeting your most promising customers can help acquire new customers at a much lower cost.
Regardless of the type of customer you are looking to attract, your website is one of the best tools you can use for marketing. Ensuring it is thoroughly optimised to rank high in the search engine results means you have the potential to reach more customers. You need to consider the relevance of the search terms you are ranking for and the SEO strategy should be tailored for your target audience so they can find you easily. For local strategies, use your location in the page titles, heading and text and also set up your business on Google Places to ensure more people can find you.
Over 50% of traffic now comes from mobile devices, so it is important to make sure that your website is prepared.
For both local and national marketing, having a mobile responsive website is key. Give your audience a website they can easily navigate round and find the information they are looking for. This will not only encourage them to return, it will also increase the conversion rate.
Facebook advertising and social media marketing are two of the most popular forms of local marketing. They are two ways of easily identifying and targeting a very specific audience. However, one emerging trend identified by Reach Local is the use of in-app advertising. This gives businesses the opportunity to promote adverts with coupons, promotions, maps and directions to customers in a specific location.
Google have recently updated their documentation on how businesses are ranked in local search. Before, it consisted of the use of relevance and distance, whereas it now has the addition of ‘prominence’. This refers to “how well-known a business is”, e.g. famous places like a museum or popular shops. Google will now take this into account, looking at the information they have about the business such as links, articles and directories. So the better your SEO is and the higher your review count, the more positive rating your business will have. This shows how important your SEO strategy is for both organic and also local search results.
With the cost of national marketing campaigns being fairly high, it is important that the message you are trying to get across to customers is memorable, otherwise it can get lost among the other competitors messages. This is one of the biggest negatives of national marketing, as you are generally dealing with high levels of competition regardless of the sector you work in.
Targeting a local audience may not be enough on its own to sustain the amount of sales your business needs. Narrowing down your perfect customer to target is one step but then you have to persuade them that you are offering the best product or service amongst all the other brands and businesses you are competing with.
Finding the right balance between local and national marketing is the key. With tools such as Facebook advertising, Google PPC and Keyword Planner, it makes it much easier to maintain a successful mix of both local and national marketing strategies online. These tools give you the ability to specifically target a small minority, or reach out to a much wider audience. What might not work as a national strategy might work really well more localised. It is important that you consider both marketing strategies so that you maximize the potential to generate positive results from each audience group. Find out more about factors affecting local SEO.