The Big Benefits of Social Media for Marketing Local

We think of social media as a way to reach disparate audiences spread around the country or globe. But social media marketing can also work on a local scale. For brick-and-mortar businesses offering a unique atmosphere or great dining, social media recommendations from locals can help drive customers through the door in ways that can be much more impactful than traditional advertising.

In Jeffrey Hayzlett’s article, “Social Media Marketing Tips for Local Businesses,” for Entrepreneur, he points out, “In today’s connected world, customers research purchases online and seek recommendations from friends and family. So, it’s in the best interest of small businesses to have a vibrant and interactive social media presence.”

Even social media platforms with a decidedly global outlook have features especially beneficial for local marketing. For example, Facebook has the “check-in” feature, which lets users link to your business via Facebook when they are at your address — a great way to let customers advertise their patronage of your business to their social media contacts.

Many platforms also have a strong focus on the visual. Writing for Business News Daily, Danielle Corcione discusses some of the better-known social media platforms, including Pinterest, Instagram and Snapchat, which are very visual media. The cliché of a picture being worth 1,000 words is a cliché because it’s simply true. If a potential customer can see your delicious food or your beautiful local artwork, as opposed to reading about it, they are probably more likely to pay you a visit.

Remember, social media — at its core — is all about community. While the digital age certainly means that we can have communities that are completely detached from notions of geography, living in the same city, town or neighborhood still has a powerful unifying effect on those who would otherwise be strangers. And when it comes to brick-and mortar-businesses, it’s just not as realistic to think a frequent customer is going to convince a social media connection on the other side of the globe to make a trip to your restaurant or your store. But they could very well convince a handful of people from down the street.

How are you using social media to connect and compel local audiences to action?


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