My business is tanking! What Happened? I've tried traditional small business marketing but it doesn't work, so what do I do?
You're not alone. Local businesses are down 30% or more in most industries and we can't sit around waiting for a golden ticket. If you don't have all the customers you want right now, then read on because these 3 steps are the first things you need to do to get there.
#1. Yellow pages, phone books, are all things of the past. 82% of customers use the internet before making a purchase locally – yes, that includes your potential customers. So how does a small business compete these days?
Small business marketing has moved to the internet. End of story. You must be tapping into the local small business marketing channels available to you. The good news is, many of them are free and can be done with your current employees – or if you're the only employee than you can do it to.
Have you heard of Google Maps or Google Places. Well, Google recently turned Google Places into their Google Maps and essentially it's Google's version of the yellow pages. First things first, you need to be on Google Places. Google offers many small business marketing tactics for local businesses, but above all make sure you're listed here. It's a free service and just takes a minute to set up. Remember, to fill in every part of your Google Places page to improve your results.
#2. Local Online Directories – Even though yellow pages are a thing of the past, the yellow pages and white pages have turned to the internet as well. Make sure you're listed in these for your local markets. Most have a free option and a paid option – and depending on your small business marketing budget, you'll want to do the one that suits your financial situation. Paid options do tend to produce better results.
#3. Local Online Classifieds – Craigslist is the largest classified site in the world. Are you using this to advertise your business? You should. It's a free service and it gives you a great way to get additional exposure and improve your online presence. It's a very effective way to get some small business marketing into your mix and advertise specials or anything you want for that matter!
Truthfully, there are probably a thousand more options, but let's not overload you right now. This shouldn't be just an entertaining article – get out there and do it. If you don't have the time, then make the time or have one of your employees do it. Stop what you're doing, and complete the #3 small business marketing tactics and you will see an increase in the amount of traffic to your company this month. If you are interested in more help or more advanced marketing strategies, feel free to give us a call and we'll be happy to help you get started. The important part of small business marketing is to do it!