Brick and mortar retail may have lost its strength in recent years with the dominance of digital giants like Amazon, but local services on main street are alive and well. Hundreds of billions of dollars are spent every year in the U.S. at local businesses like hair salons, spas and even yoga studios, and those numbers aren’t going anywhere any time soon.
Despite the strength of the main street economy, it’s still a dog fight to rise to the top as the provider of choice in your local community. Competition remains fierce, and great service is no longer the only differentiator that keeps clients coming through the doors. Below are 3 tips to succeed at local marketing in 2014:
1. Your clients are your best marketing – Small business owners have known this for years, but often expect clients to automatically spread the word on their own. Find creative ways to encourage clients to refer friends, post reviews and boast their loyalty to your business.
2. Throw the pen and paper away – The effectiveness of pen and paper appointment scheduling is debated by local businesses, many of whom have been scheduling appointments with their clients on a paper calendar for years and don’t always see the benefit in moving to an electronic system. While that perspective remains prevalent, the advantages of having client appointment history and contact information stores in an electronic system are undeniable, especially when it comes to marketing.
3. Don’t fear technology – No computer? No problem. Almost every business owner has a smartphone or tablet these days, and a mobile device is more than sufficient to access all the tools you need to manage and grow your business.
For more tips, follow Corey’s local marketing blog.