Many local business owners of bricks and mortar stores feel that modern marketing methods do not work for their business. While it is true that the Internet and social media seem to be more global than local, when used correctly, they can be a great way to drive more customers to your local business.
As for offline marketing methods, so many people are focusing on what is going on online, that it is easier to grab people’s attention offline. Then we have all the new opportunities created by mobile marketing. Let’s see how using all three together can drive more traffic to your site and store.
*Local Deals Offers
A whole new industry has sprung up recently with the invention of collective buying and special deals. Groupon and Living Social are two of the most successful programs, with Amazon and Google Offers launching in New York City and Facebook Offers launching in Chicago to try to cash in on the success of such sites.
If you are located in a large city, compare these programs and see if any are right for you. Be prepared to offer a 50% discount or better on your services but also keep in mind that you are getting the cash up front, rather than having to wait for customers to come in and buy. Also remember that in most cases, customers will spend more than the face value of the discount coupon that they have purchased. Also remember that they might purchase more than one coupon for themselves and also as gifts.
* Use Craigslist
Craigslist is a large site, but organized by metropolitan areas. Therefore, you can place ads for free in relevant sections of Craigslist which can help drive traffic to your site or bricks and mortar store. For example, if you want to give free samples away on a particular day, post an ad and see how many people turn up.
* Create a listing for local guides
Many local groups and organizations support each other by listing local businesses. Other locations would be the free guides in supermarkets, real estate guides to your area, church guides that list the businesses run by their parishioners, notice boards at the supermarkets and local pharmacies, and more.
There are many offline ad opportunities available to you. Try as many of them as you can given your limitations of time and money.
An inexpensive classified ad can drive a lot of traffic your way. Combine it with QR codes to get even more customers in through the door.
These local guides are inexpensive and offer great deals designed to entice new customers to see all you have to offer.
An attractive postcard can really grab a prospective customer’s attention and lead them to come in to try out your products and services, especially if you offer a discount. With so many people turning to online marketing, mailboxes are relatively empty, so you have a greater chance of capturing their attention than you might online.
Local Advertising Through Mobile Devices
Marketers are just starting to scratch the surface of the power of mobile marketing for local businesses, but here a couple of suggestions.
*Use QR Codes to Advertise Your Business
QR codes allow a person with a smartphone to learn more about your business by scanning your small square box. Send them to a special url, or create the QR code so that it uploads your data into their contacts area as a virtual business card, and you will get more customers.
*Text great offers
Have customers give you their mobile number and send them timely texts on special sales. Slow day on Tuesdays? Send out a special offer on that day and watch your customers come running.
*Tweet on Twitter
There is nothing better than having someone invite others to your because they are tweeting what they are doing and showing photos of the great time they are having. You can do the same, creating an atmosphere in your Twitter account, especially on a slow weeknight, that will encourage people to come on down to see what surprise you have in store for them. From quiz night with spot prizes to great 2 for 1 offers, you can craft great offers to get people in the door enjoying all your business does best.
Many businesses feel that the Internet is not for them because the search parameters are so wide, but using a combination of online, offline and mobile marketing techniques can drive a great number of customers your way once you know how.