Small businesses have a huge advantage over national (or global) brands when it comes to local marketing. You know your customers very well. You know what’s happening on the ground at any given time, be it the weather or local events. You can quickly make adjustments in your business when you see changes in purchasing behavior.
When it comes to hyperlocal social marketing, that’s even more true – and you can use it to your advantage to drive sales.
What is hyperlocal social marketing?
It’s listening to customers’ needs in real time and delivering the information they want when they want it based on their location.
For example, let’s say you’re a plumber. Before and during a heavy thunderstorm, you see that residents in your area are posting photos on Twitter and Facebook of flooded basements. You immediately set up highly targeted ad campaigns on Twitter and Facebook offering 10% off emergency services for residents in your area.
How can my small business use it?
Combine these six tips, and you have a winning recipe for hyperlocal social marketing.
Social media marketing is the equivalent of a real-life conversation. It’s as much about listening as it is about talking. In fact, I would argue that listening is probably more important. You can’t know what someone needs unless you hear them say it.
So the first step in hyperlocal social marketing is to listen to what your followers and fans are saying on social media. Follow trending topics and hashtags to find opportunities for your small business to help in some way, whether it’s by sharing a tip or offering discount.
2. Pay attention to local news
Read the local news online every day. Follow local radio and TV stations on social media. Subscribe to news alerts. Pay attention to what’s going on in your area so you can respond quickly when an opportunity arises.
3. Use very specific ad targeting criteria
The more targeted your ads are, the more likely they are to boost sales. Target ads by ZIP codes, home ownership, pet ownership, relationship status, gender – whatever criteria allow you to reach the right people at the right time.
4. Focus on providing value
No matter what, your ad must be relevant and provide value to your customers. Do not promote how great your business is. Promote the products and services that can immediately benefit the people you are trying to reach.
5. Personalize messages
Speak directly to the challenge your target market is having right now. Empathize with their plight. Show you care.
6. Be authentic
Only use hyperlocal social marketing when it makes sense for your business. Don’t try to force a connection between your business and a local event. People can see right through poseurs.
Have you already used hyperlocal social marketing? What other tips can you add to my list?
Want more assistance growing your business online? Join the Web.com Small Business Forum for free access to our library of ebooks, the latest industry news and support from other business owners, entrepreneurs and working professionals. Join a Group to ask questions, share your opinions and grow your network! Visit Web.com to learn about our full range of affordable website design and online marketing services.