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How to Promote Your Business Locally in 2019

The landscape that we marketers work in is changing all the time, and fortunately there are more ways to reach your customers now than ever before. For a business owner who is just starting out, or if you have an established business that you’re looking to grow, you may be considering ways to increase sales and further establish yourself as an industry expert. Continue reading for three methods to help you grow your business online for free. 

1. Live Facebook and Instagram videos

Live Facebook and Instagram videos not only help you beat the facebook algorithm without having to buy ads, but it gives you a chance to showcase behind the scenes action. Your potential and current customers and clients get to see you in action and learn more about your business. You can a live video with your phone or your computer. You do not need to buy special equipment of any kind. The best live videos are educational and show your customers how to do something. If you own a professional business, you can give out free advice. If you own a clothing store you can show your customer how to pick out the right outfit. Make it educational and appealing to your ideal client.

2. Start a blog. 

Creating a blog on your website helps you build authority with your customers. It also allows you to use SEO strategies on your website to help your website rank better in search engines. Approach each of your blogs with educational content much like you would in a live video. You want to give your potential customers and clients something of value. It should be educational and entertaining. 

3. Start a YouTube channel. 

YouTube is slightly different than your live videos in the fact that the content is searchable and stays around for several years. Again, making the content educational is key. YouTube is the second most used search engine next to google. It’s free and relatively easy to use. Please know that you do not need to buy anything to start a youtube channel. You have the ability to film, edit, and upload right from your phone. All you need is something to share with your audience and natural light!

If you found this blog post helpful, leave us a comment below! Tell us if you utilize any of the methods mentioned in this post. For even more content like this, check out my YouTube channel where I create videos to help you achieve a life you love and a business that thrives!

4 Tips to Help You Market Your Business Locally

When I started my business last year, I was only focused on using social media to get my name out there. Of course, this is a great way to market your business, but it wasn’t until I focused on local marketing that my business started to grow. Here are 4 ways to market your business locally!

1. Reach out to your local Rotary clubs and offer to speak on your subject matter.

In February, I started reaching out to local rotary clubs. In doing so, I booked a speech to talk to almost 100 local business owners about using remote workers and virtual assistants in their business. Of course, this involved preparing a speech, presentation, and practicing, but the opportunity to get my name out there was huge. My advice when reaching out to your local rotary clubs it is to relate your speech to their needs. In my case, a lot of the rotary members own small businesses, and one of the biggest topics in business circles right now is how millennial’s conceptualize work life balance. So my speech covered this and how many millennial’s are seeking to work remotely to achieve a work life balance. I also talked about productivity and the impacts of allowing employees to work from home on small businesses. I am not outright selling my services, but I’m providing them with something valuable that they can use with their own businesses.

2. Join your local chamber. 

If you provide business to business services, your local chamber is a great way to network and promote your business. When I joined my local chamber, they did a couple of things to introduce my business to the community. First there was a ribbon cutting, which serves as a “grand opening” of sorts for new and established businesses. They also do a live Facebook video with you where they interview you and let you talk about your business, which is exciting. The other advantages of joining your local chamber is the many in-person networking opportunities. I admit that in the past I haven’t always taken advantage of networking events, but when I do go I find it to be less awkward than I imagined. This is a case where the best advice is to get dressed and just show up. Make it a point to talk to at least 3 people at each event. I do this by asking them questions about their business, and I only tell them about my business if they ask.

3. Take advantage of word of mouth.

One of the most overlooked methods of promoting yourself locally is telling your family, friends, and personal contacts about your business and your services. When I re-launched earlier this year, I sent an email to my family and friends letting them know what I was doing. I included my portfolio, website, and social media links. I told them what services I offer and what kind of businesses may be a good fit. This was helpful because I’ve received some viable leads from my family and friends. Plus, I know they will continue to help me out by giving my name to anyone they run into in the future that could benefit from my services.  Most of the time your family and friends want to see you succeed.

4. Facebook 

It’s a no-brainer that you should be using social media to promote your business, but Facebook in particular is a great way to promote yourself locally. The reason it is effective at the local level is that people are using Facebook to look businesses up much like they would on google. Think about it: how many times have you looked up a restaurant’s Facebook page and read their reviews? The key is to make sure your page is fully optimized. Ask your customers to leave Facebook reviews. Another way to use Facebook effectively is the live video feature. Schedule live videos about once a week to make sure your content is being seen by your audience.

These tips are a great place to start for anyone looking to grow their following and promote your business locally in 2019. For even more curated informational content, check out our YouTube channel where I create videos to help you achieve a life you love and a business that thrives!

Top 7 Reasons you need to be using Facebook for your small business

top 7 reasons your business should be on Facebook

Your personal life has been changed by social media, and it should be changing the way you work.  If you own a small business, social media MUST be part of your marketing strategy. If not, you may not be around in 5 years.

But, there are so many social media platforms, which one should you be on?  If you had to only choose one, it should be Facebook. Here’s why.

Reason #1: If you’re not on Facebook, you don’t exist.  

Facebook is the largest social media platform in the world with over 2.2 billion active users each month. These users are searching your business name on Facebook to check your credibility. This includes checking to see if you have reviews and if you’re actively posting. If you don’t have a Facebook page, it is hard for them to determine if you even exist.

Reason # 2: You can target your direct audience using Facebook ads.  

Facebook allows you to develop marketing campaigns based on demographics such as location, education, job titles, income, interest, life events, and behaviors. Let’s say you’re a divorce attorney in Florida and your target market is women. You can create a Facebook ad targeting women in Florida who’ve changed their relationship status on Facebook from married to separated. This allows you to market directly to your ideal client resulting in increased revenue and saving you from wasting your advertising budget on those who are unlikely to work with you.

Reason # 3: Your customers expect instant answers.  

We live in a time where people want the answers to their questions right away. Thanks, Google!  Your customers are sending you messages and posting their questions on your business page at hours of the day and night. They expect to receive those answers quickly, so they can make their buying decision. If they pose the same question to your competitor and your competitor is replying to them faster, you’ve lost a customer to your competition.

Reason # 4: You can gain insight into the needs of your customers.  

Let’s say you’re selling Tupperware. Your customers are leaving positive reviews on your Facebook page, but they keep commenting on your posts telling you they’d like more color options. Boom! Now, you know you can expand your Tupperware business by offering more colors. For that matter, you can engage with your customers and find out what specific colors they’re asking for. Think of it as a free focus group.

Reason # 5: Create a human side to your business.  

Facebook allows you to put a face and personality behind your business. At the basic level you can achieve this by engaging with your customers and creating content that reflects your companies voice. One of the best ways to incorporate the human aspect is by incorporating video into your Facebook postings. This creates the like, know, and trust factor that makes customers want to buy from you!

Reason # 6: Facebook is the new word-of-mouth.  

Let’s say Suzy and Dave are looking for a romantic restaurant for their anniversary date. Suzy posts on Facebook asking for a recommendation. Her friends reply to giving recommendations to their favorite restaurant. Suzy takes her best friends’ advice and looks your business up on Facebook. She likes what she sees and makes a reservation for Friday night.

Reason # 7: Reply to negative reviews.  

I’ve heard some business owners complain about the review feature on Facebook. Specifically, because they’ve received a negative review and they didn’t know what to do about it. You need to understand how to use this feature for the positive. Replying to negative reviews is an opportunity to resolve a customer’s issue and create a life long customer. It also shows potential customers that you care and can handle yourself professionally.

Download our Facebook Strategies Cheat Sheet for more information on using Facebook to increase your business sales and revenue…go ahead, it’s FREE!

Download our FREE Facebook Strategies Cheat Sheet!

How to use Instagram for your business.

How to use Instagram for your business.

Your niece uses Instagram to post selfies. So, how can you use this social media platform to promote your service?  The key to using Instagram for your business is to look at it from the personal branding side. It takes a little planning, but it’s an effective way to increase not only your visibility but also create the like, know, and trust factor so people will WANT to work with you.  I have put together 5 tips on how to use Instagram for your business.

Tip # 1: Optimize your profile. 

Your Instagram username should match your username on all your other social media platforms. I recommend making it your own name. This is especially important if you are a one-person shop. If you are not the face of the business, that is okay. You can use your business name. Just be sure to keep it consistent, so people can easily find you across platforms. Also, use the name section on your profile to highlight what you do. For example, my username on Instagram is Bonnie Anderson Consulting, my name is “Social Media Strategist.” If someone searches Instagram for a social media strategist, my profile will show up.

Tip # 2: Tell people what you do in your bio.  

When someone looks at your profile, they shouldn’t have to try and guess what it is that you do. That bio feature is there for a reason, to tell people what you do, who you do it for, what results they can expect, and what to do next. Be as specific as you can. If you crochet scarves and sale them through your online store, then your bio might look like this, “I crochet scarves for women who desire quality over quantity. My scarves keep you warm and last for years. Click the link below to order.” There’s no question about what you do, who you serve, what your customers can expect from your product, and where they can purchase them.

Tip # 3: Create a feed people want to look at.  

You need stunning and diverse photos. People don’t want to look at the same photos that have the same poses, background, or outfits. Mix it up.  Capture some behind the scenes, and add some personality that will shine through on your profile. This can include posting pictures of yourself at conferences and workshops, having a cup of coffee, or working on your business from your home office. Don’t forget to include captivating text on each of your photos. For example, if you’re posting a photo of yourself at a conference, include details that let your followers know what you learned at the workshop, and how you plan to implement it in your business.

Tip # 4: Use relevant hashtags.  

Before you even start posting on Instagram, make a list of hashtags that are relevant to your business. Use the search bar in Instagram and search for relevant hashtags. Come up with a good list of about 50 hashtags that have anywhere from 10,000 posts and above. Rotate those hashtags in your postings, using about 10 at a time.  Each time you use one, date it. This way you see which of those hashtags work best for engaging your potential clients.

Tip # 5: Make sure your feed matches your brand.  

If your brand is fun and flirty, your pictures should represent that. Maybe your business with a touch of creative, then your pictures and captions should reflect that. Any inspirational quotes you want to share, then those graphics should match your fonts and colors. Think of your Instagram profile as your online resume. What message do you want to portray to your audience? Now, go make your content all about that message.

These tips will help get you going on Instagram. You can follow me on Instagram by clicking here.  Shoot me a message and tell me “I got this!”

We also have a FREE Facebook Strategies worksheet to help you get started with tackling Facebook.

Download our FREE Facebook Strategies Cheat Sheet!

Benefits of using social media.

Don’t be the business owner that doesn’t understand the benefits of using social media.

Don’t be the business owner that doesn’t understand the benefits of using social media.

You have a social media account for your business, but you’re barely using it.  Or maybe, you’re not using social media at all in your business.  Either way, it’s okay. After reading this blog, you’ll understand how social media can benefit your business, and gain some motivation to start posting regularly.

Benefit # 1: Brand Awareness

Whether you have an established brand, or you’re just starting out, social media gets your brand out to your target audience. This provides your business with a way to interact with customers and potential customers on a personal level. Today, consumers use social media to check out a brand before buying. They’re looking at your Facebook reviews, comments on your post, and the quality of your content. You’ll want to create content that aligns with your brand and gets people talking.

Benefit # 2: Creating exceptional Customer Service

Today, customers expect instant gratification. You can thank social media for that. Customers and potential customers expect an instant reply to their questions. If your competitor replies to them before you do, you’ve lost the sale. Responding to them quickly shows that you care and that you want to work with them. Use social media to show you’re committed to customer satisfaction and creating an exceptional customer experience.

Benefit # 3: Effective Advertisement

Social media advertisement is the most effective advertising on the market. People spend hours a day on social media platforms. This has created the perfect opportunity for you to reach your target market over and over again. You can target specific demographics, locations, and interest to make your advertising dollar count.

Benefit # 5: Research

Whether researching what your competitors are doing, or finding out your customers pain points, social media is an effective research platform.  You want to do business better than your competition, then check out their page and make yours better than theirs. You want to find out your customers pain points, read the comments and reviews on your business Facebook page. Listening to your customers is key for a successful business.

Now you know exactly what the benefits of Social Media are to business, so now what? You need a social media marketing plan.  Check out our website to see how we can help you navigate the Social Media World.

Check out our services!

Look back shortly as we will be providing social media marketing tips and tricks, so make sure to subscribe to our blog.  Comment below if this helped to explain why social media is so important for your business, or if there is a specific topic you would like to see in the future!  We also have a Facebook strategies guide you can download…go ahead, it’s FREE!

Download our FREE Facebook Strategies Cheat Sheet!