If you’ve recently started a business, or have been up and running for a while now and are still looking to get your name out there amongst the locals, we have some tips for you.
It’s never been easier to build a customer base, thanks to the internet and more specifically, social media. But while you can reach everyone in the big wide world who has an online presence, starting local and growing from there can be just as rewarding.
We’ll start with social media as it plays a big part in everyone’s lives these days. When you set up an account, be sure to include where you’re based. If, for example, you make cakes in Cambridge, be sure to say you bake cakes in Cambridge. That way when someone searches for ‘Cambridge cake maker’ they will have more of a chance of finding you. Don’t forget to use hashtags and include where you’re based.
Keep them updated
Sending weekly or monthly emails to your customer base (and potential customers) is a great way to build your brand. Your update can feature offers and discounts, product developments and any information regarding business changes. By keeping your customers in the know, it can build awareness of your brand and keep them looking forward to what is coming.
Another great way to boost your business’ presence is to connect and support fellow local initiatives and businesses. Partnerships have been a strategy for big businesses for many years with the likes of Nike partnering with Apple, for example. On a local level, take inspiration from businesses around you. Perhaps you could sponsor a football team or a local event to make your presence felt in the community. It is a great way to get your name in front of more people and, on a local level, can help boost your reputation as a supportive business.
Always offer great service
This one goes without saying, but offering a good service is the most effective way to grow your business’ local customer base. Word of mouth is one of your biggest marketing tactics. Reviews are important, and more people are likely to trust a review from a friend or family member than one written on the internet. Treat each customer like they are carrying a billboard with your business on it, will you be happy with what they have to say about you? If you go above and beyond for every customer, you can expect them to recommend you to someone if they are happy with the service they received. If the service is not adequate, word will spread.
Create a loyalty program
Customer loyalty is as essential as getting new customers – and you can even use it to grow. Offer rewards when people shop with you, as well as bonuses and discounts when they recommend friends. As well as retaining your customers, you could also gain new ones.