When your business is located in a small town, there are unique marketing advantages and challenges. That’s why marketing strategies for businesses in small towns can vary dramatically to those recommended for companies in larger areas.
When you are marketing a business in a small town, here are 5 things you can do:
1. Use Word of Mouth as a Marketing Strategy
In a small community, people will normally have a preferred supplier, contractor, or shop that they go to when they need something. If they don’t – they will call their friend to see who they recommend.
Therefore, you need to get out into the community to let people know what you do. Network with other business owners to find out what they do and how you can work together, and leave business cards with them, too.
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By becoming a friendly name for the community and businesses, you will promote your company through word of mouth, without actually having to do any marketing. Establishing your personal brand is fundamental in a local community, as they will want to invest in a person rather than a company name.
2. Sponsor Local Events
A great way to build your reputation with the locals is to use promotions at local events. Sponsor charity balls, football matches, parades, and so on, or host your own event.
By showing your willingness to invest in the community, you will promote your business without having to use the hard sell, which will turn many locals off. Be creative and create an event that the locals will love and will tell their friends about.
3. Get Local Press Coverage
One of the advantages of being in a local community is the lack of competition you have with the bigger brands. Therefore, the local press will love to hear your brand’s story, especially if it’s unique. Create interesting spins on your company (e.g. hosting your own event) and make sure the local press know about.
4. Give Away Freebies
Giving away freebies isn’t always the most viable marketing strategy for a startup business. However, it is a great way of getting people through the door. So, if you are limited with your budget, offer the first 25 people who come to your store a great freebie.
Everyone loves an incentive, and if you do get more people than you expected, why not offer them a discount on a product or service? That way, you are generating sales while getting the local community to try your business.
5. Be Active Online
Even though you are marketing your company in a small town, it is crucial you are connecting with your customers online, too. This doesn’t necessarily mean you need a website, as Facebook or other social media channels are often sufficient enough. Look at where your targeted customer base is hanging out, and join them! It is also a good idea to monitor online reviews of your company, responding to them accordingly. Always stay connected with your customers.
Are you running a business in a small town? We’d love to hear what your marketing strategies are in our comment box below!