Today, we’re going to cover some specific strategies and action items for dialing in your marketing on a local level, so you start capturing more clients and customers online and pulling them into your shop, bar or restaurant.
Your industry doesn’t matter nearly as much as your online presence does…
What that means is, whether you’re a chiropractor, a contractor, an accountant or a landscaper, there are certain things that you MUST have in place in order to capture clients and customers online, and drive them into your business.
With that said, this checklist includes levels, or steps, of engagement.
The first level is made up of things that you MUST have in place if you want to build out a successful, thriving digital presence that will bolster your revenue and get you clients online.
Those are your foundational elements. Your prerequisites.
The second and third steps are just that, secondary and tertiary action items.
They represent varying levels of customer acquisition and engagement, and ONLY work when you have your foundation in place…
With that, let’s get started!
Creating Your Digital Presence
There are a few things that you absolutely need in order to capture customers online… And a lot of other stuff that you don’t.
What you will find here are the absolute essentials, after years of working with both local and digital businesses online. You can add to the list below but, at bare minimum, you need to have these few things set up.
An Updated Website:
Most likely, you have a website of some sort already. Maybe you paid your niece of nephew a few hundred bucks or went all out and got a custom website from a local web designer.
The fact of the matter, you need something online. You need to be able to point people in a direction and say, “Here’s what we do.”
At the bare minimum, your website must be appealing, and contain the following information:
- Home page - the page that frames your business, your target marketing and succinctly describes what you do and who you do it for.
- Lead Generation page - somewhere that people can fill out a form and get more information about you.
- Contact page - including your phone and address
- About page - Who you are. What you do. Why you do it…
- Services and/or Products page - What do you sell? What are some of the features and benefits of it? How can someone buy online?
Of those 5 pages, the most important is the lead generation page.
The lead generation page is where people can sign up to learn more about you, get coupons and discount codes, whatever… They’re opting in for your email list and requesting further engagement and marketing from you. Getting someone signed up to your email list is as good as money in the bank if you’re marketing to them correctly.
Once your landing page is set up, you can employ what’s known as an email autoresponder so the whole thing just works on it’s own.
If you’re wondering how to get these pages set up in your business, make sure to watch this video on the Scriptly Page Builder. With that software, you can create your landing pages without touching a line of code or hiring an expensive developer to redo your entire website.
Now, you are probably asking yourself, “Why would people enter their email for my business? I run an ice cream shop!”
And my answer to you is this: “It’s all about staying in touch.”
You see, you want to be top of mind for your customers before their first purchase, during their first transaction, and after their first transaction.
You want them coming back!
And that leads me to the second thing you need to have in place…
Email Marketing List:
The biggest thing that business owners miss is the importance of having an email marketing list.
With an email list, you achieve two things:
- You have a list of customers that you can mail to whenever you’re doing anything new and exciting, including events, having a sale, or running a promotion.
- You can communicate to people who haven’t yet done business with you, and are still interested in your products or services.
That means, you can reach out whenever you want and get in touch with them!
Talk about a relief right? Not having to worry about your company not doing enough business to keep the doors open!
We’re just getting ready to open up our email marketing tool, Convertly, to the public. From the small client group that we’ve been working with, the results have been incredible!
Not only is it easy to use and intuitive, but you can automate your marketing like never before with a few clicks of your mouse!
The third part of the foundational treatment your local business needs is a solid Facebook Page.
1 in 8 people online have a Facebook account. 25% of those people log in at least daily. That means that your customers are there, in Facebook, looking for you!
It doesn’t matter whether you have a restaurant, a landscaping business, or a chiropractic office… You’re prospects are online.
The thing about having a successful Facebook Page is that you need to post on it frequently, and not just about your business.
- Comment on trending topics in your profession
- Post pictures of work you’ve done or projects that you’ve completed
- Include testimonials of buyers and clients
- Post the new, extraordinary items you’ve gotten in your inventory
- Post pictures that have to do with the niche your business is in
- Link to news stories about things that are happening in your space
A good rule of thumb is that for every direct, promotional ‘thing’ you post, have 4 ‘non-promotional’ posts go up as well.
So, roughly 20% of the time can be about you. The other 80% of the time, make it about your prospects and clients.
Getting Customers & Clients
Now that you’ve got you prerequisites dialed in, it’s time to look at your client or customer acquisition process.
For this, we’re going to need to start getting traffic.
As a local business, there are a few options that, once you set them up, will start bringing you local customers and patrons, ready and willing to buy from you!
That’s the benefit of being local, as opposed to entirely digital. A website is easily lost in the noise and clutter of the Internet.
A local business – not so much.
Here are your action steps for engaging with local customers:
Google Places or Google’s Business Pages are brilliant for local businesses because they tie in 100% to local searches.
Meaning, when someone types in ‘mexican restaurant san diego,’ what pops up is targeted listings of all the Mexican places in San Diego!
Plus, each of those restaurants can have reviews attached to them, making your customers and prospects increasingly well informed.
Because Google owns the Android mobile operating system, they’ve made it a priority to focus a LOT of time and effort on local businesses and delivering the best mobile experience to its users as possible.
The same goes for every other local, bricks and mortar type of business around.
Do a Google search for your company, in your area. See what comes up?!
Are the reviews good. Are they bad?
The first step is setting up your ‘Google My Business’ listing here:
The next thing to take a look at is local SEO, or Search Engine Optimization.
Search Engine Optimization is how well your business is placed in Google. The BEST place for it to be, obviously, is on the first page of Google.
The MORE times you can get on the first page, the better.
If you can rank their organically, that’s awesome!
If you’re Google My Business listing goes there, that’s awesome!
The more times you can get there, the better…
Here’s a screenshot of Google’s first page, with an explanation of what each of the sections are…
- This is the search phrase that your customers are looking for
- Here, you’ll find how many competing web pages are out there for your search phrase (AKA competitors online)
- Paid ads, placed through Google Adwords, for the keyword phrase typed into the search box
- Organic listings in Google. These pages are ranked so well that they DON’T pay to be there… This is the results of good Local SEO
- Google My Business listings. This is the area that you will occupy once you get a Google My Business listing.
- The local map, with pins in it, representing all of the establishments like yours in the local area.
- Paid ads, placed through Google Adwords.
That’s the anatomy of the first page of Google.
The more listings you can get on that page, the more traffic you’ll get, the more clients and customers you’ll receive and the better off you’ll be.
The last thing you’re going to need to do to ensure your digital client-getting success is to start getting familiar with the Facebook Advertising platform.
Now, this short article isn’t long enough to get into a full blown tutorial (we’ll save that for a webinar a little later!), but there are something you should be aware of.
First, you can send traffic anywhere you want… Your Facebook Page. A page on your website. A landing page or a booking form. Where ever.
All you have to do is put your website in here:
From there, you can write up your ad:
Thirdly, you can target anyone you want (and this is where the TRUE power of Facebook lies.
You see, Facebook has been collecting data on it’s members for years, and they’ve gone out and partnered with some of the largest data collection companies in the world…
Which means, you get unparalleled access to the likes, interests, behaviors and demographics of your target market.
Let’s take a look real quick at the ad placement screen, so I can point out a few things.
Let’s run these down one by one:
- Custom Audiences: This is where you use data that you already have to target your ads, such as phone numbers or email addresses. You can also use this field to do Facebook retargeting.
- Locations are where you drill down into the country, state or city you want. This means that if you serve a hyper-local market, you can just advertise directly to those people.
- Age/Gender/Language: This field is pretty self explanatory. You should know exactly who you’re targeting in this category!
- The More Demographics tab is all about drilling down traditional demographics. Age. Income. Kids. House size. Job. All the things you would normally expect to be able to target.
- Interests: This is where you target people based on what they like, such as magazines, television shows, industry publications, and associations.
- Behaviors: In this field, you’re going to include stuff they do or are doing, such as shopping for a new car, buying stuff online, playing mobile games… Stuff like that.
You see, you can target as narrow or as wide as you like!
Make sure to keep you ad budget small at first, and then scale.
Secondary Action Items
Now, let’s get real. You probably feel like you’re doing a LOT online, and not getting any results.
Most likely, what you’re doing is going to fall into this ‘secondary action items’ category. You see, this stuff is usually pretty time consuming, and never really yields the client and customer-type results that you’re looking for.
These items include:
- Newspaper advertising
- Telephone book advertising
- Posting in local forums or trying to get local news write-ups
- Any text message marketing (otherwise known as SMS)
- Just posting Facebook status updates on your Page
- Posting Youtube videos
- Spending a bunch of time in LinkedIn (or doing LinkedIn ads which are expensive!)
- Going to networking groups or Chamber of Commerce events
The bottom line is, you need to be actively building your business online by concentrating on the few, high-yield activities.
I’d love to help you figure out how to market your business more effectively online. To set up a free Action Plan call with me, click here. We’ll jump on and chat about your business and how to get a lot more clients and customers converted for you!