The term ‘local business’ can be confusing when it comes to implementing lead generation using local business marketing strategies.
Your business might serve a national or even global client base and yet still qualify for the same perks of ‘local’ business marketing as those enjoyed by the neighborhood accountant, dentist or roofing contractor.
How does this work?
First of all, ‘local’ simply refers to the fact that you have an office in a local area. If you have a bricks and mortar operation your office IS located in a local area. That’s pretty self explanatory. But what if you have multiple offices in multiple areas? Fortunately, with a little pre=planning, each of these can be classified as a ‘local’ business and be used individually for lead generation purposes.
The only difference between an organization with multiple offices in multiple locations and an organization that has a single office in a single location is that the former will be able to take advantage of these strategies in multiple areas rather than in just one.
While we never advocate relying on Google or any other search engine or 3rd party platform exclusively for your lead generation, there are many advantages to making the most of the available online ‘local’ strategies. Adopting a strong ‘local’ marketing strategy will improve your ranking and visibility in your local area as well as in general search results.
If you want to use local business marketing strategies effectively and avoid running into issues with search engines, then you need to understand how it all fits together. There are certain small mistakes that can defeat your objectives before you begin.
Each online presence that you set up, including your web site, social media accounts, and local directory listings will play a part in the authority of your business online. It’s important to make sure that all the instances where you can be found online are displaying exactly the same information.
As simple as this sounds, it’s actually not. It’s extremely difficult to remain consistent in everything unless you pre-plan carefully. The slightest variation in configuration of information, spelling or any of the other myriad of details you input when setting up each of these instances will result in a ‘drop’ of credibility. In other words, if the information that is put online about your business is not standard across every instance, it will harm your overall standing. Conversely, matching information will improve your standing.
The key to a successful local business marketing strategy is remembering that ‘community’ is the new SEO of today.
Showing up in all the right communities builds credibility with your audience as well as with the search engines. In fact, Google has emphasized the importance of local / social / and mobile signals in their authority assessing algorithms. Building community across social media platforms, directory listings, web sites and blogs is a lot easier when you are showing a cohesive image everywhere.
This also encourages engagement on the social platforms in which you’re engaged.
If you’re not engaged in social platforms as yet, you should begin as soon as possible. If you’re marketing B2B then (at present) LinkedIn is the primary platform, followed by Google+, Twitter, YouTube and then Facebook and Pinterest. If you’re marketing B2C, then these same platforms apply, but their priority is slightly different. Facebook then becomes more important than LinkedIn.
Every effort should be made to be active on whichever of the platforms you’ve chosen. Daily posts are best. Do whatever it takes to get engagement. It’s the comments, shares and likes (in that order) that create buzz and help with your online rankings and visibility.
With over half of all searches for local business taking place on mobile devices such as smart phones and tablets, you absolutely need to have a mobile viewable component to your web site. If you’ve ever tried navigating a regular site on a mobile device you’ll understand why. If you haven’t, then borrow the nearest smart phone and do a search for a local business now. You’ll soon discover what a horrendous pain it is to navigate a site that’s not configured to be viewed on these small screens.
In fact, it’s such a big issue that Google is now rewarding mobile friendly sites with higher rankings and lower online advertising costs. Conversely if you are not mobile friendly, you get worse rankings and higher costs. In fact, there’s even talk that not having a mobile compatible site may altogether eliminate you from searches from mobile devices. That would not be good.
In future posts, we’ll discuss issues such as lead capture, lead nurturing and lead conversion.
If you need help with anything we’ve discussed or you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us by either calling 1.604.556.7184 or emailing us.
We’ll be more than happy to explain more about lead generation using local business marketing.