Congratulations! After months – and maybe even years – of blood, sweat and tears, you finally opened your retail store.
If you’re like many small business owners, the answer to this question comes crashing into you like huge waves from the ocean. You need to focus on getting people through the front door, which means… marketing!
So, you start creating your marketing to-do list:
- Social media
- Mobile marketing
- Reputation management
Oh wait! What about loyalty cards? Do beacons actually work? What about geo-conquesting?
Before you start scattering yourself too thin – and do a bunch of different things in hopes that SOMETHING works – here are a few words of advice.
I personally think it’s vital that SB owners market their stores by focusing on their local markets. I think local marketing is the lifeblood of small businesses, which means using strategies such as hosting live events in the community that give business owners the opportunity to meet and greet with local residents, and to form alliances with other businesses. For example, if you own a local bookstore, you could reach out to a coffee shop and inquire about offering cross-discounts that would benefit both businesses.
SB owners should also sponsor local charitable events, which helps build their reputation as being socially responsible. Sponsorship also has marketing value, because the charity will list your company’s information on their email newsletters, which can drive new traffic to your website. A majority of people who look for services online will make local inquiries, so implementing strategies that will boost your local SEO is one of the keys to successfully marketing your store.