Marketing Locally? 11 Ways to Make Your Interactions More Personal

Local shoppers can become a business’s most loyal customers by helping spread the word about the business to other community members. It’s important, then, for businesses to establish these local connections early on to see the best results from local marketing.

To help businesses create more meaningful interactions with local community members, a panel of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) members answered the following question:

“When marketing locally, what’s one way you can have more personal or one-on-one interactions with your audience? How does this affect your relationship with them?”

Here are their top recommendations.

1. Find Keywords That Relate to Your Area

“Always optimize your site for local SEO. An SEO tool will take care of the technical side, but you also want to use keywords that relate to your area. Make sure your business location is mentioned clearly on your website or you can even add a line like ‘serving Boston since 1912.’ This way, local users will be more likely to find and interact with you knowing that your business is close by.” ~ Benjamin Rojas, All in One SEO

2. Write Personalized Responses to Customers

“If you have a Google My Business profile and customers review you online, respond to those reviews with personal messages while also not breaching confidentiality. You want to avoid generic responses like, “Thank you for your review,” and instead make it more personal by including what it was like when you first met versus how their lives were improved after working with you.” ~ Givelle Lamano, Lamano Law Office

3. Get Involved in the Community

“The best way to form personal connections with local customers is to get involved in community events, like state fairs, farmer’s markets and expositions held by local schools and universities. If you find a way to sponsor these events or participate in any large gathering where you can set up a booth to speak with attendees, you can position your organization as a staple in the community.” ~ Bryce Welker, The CPA Exam Guy

4. Host Q&A Sessions on Social Media

“One way to have more personal interactions with your audience is by hosting regular Q&A sessions on social media. This way, you can engage with your followers directly and answer their questions in real time. Additionally, Q&A sessions are a great way to build trust with your followers and add more human interest to your brand.” ~ Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner

5. Promote In-Person Services

“When you market locally, you can offer a face-to-face option. As the world continues to be more virtual than ever before, nothing can replace a handshake and a person who’s a few doors away.” ~ Mary Harcourt, CosmoGlo

6. Take Reels to the Streets

“Market locally using Instagram or Facebook Reels and take them to the streets by visiting your favorite local vendors and cafes. We have always made it part of our culture to frequent locally owned businesses and engage with them through social media. It is a great way to market locally and also help grow local businesses.” ~ Matthew Capala, Alphametic

7. Interact Through In-Person Events

“One way to have more one-on-one interactions with your audience is to offer in-person appearances and events. People love to meet and interact with the experts they follow, so it’s a great way to get closer to your fans and followers. You can also use social media to create a more personal connection with your audience by responding to comments and questions and sharing behind-the-scenes content.” ~ Blair Williams, MemberPress

8. Reach Out to Your Followers on Social Media

“To have more personal interactions with your audience, reach out to them on social media. Request that they reply to your post with a comment or suggestion. Answer their questions and provide them with links back to your website. This will create a stronger bond between you and your audience so you can convert them into paying customers.” ~ Stephanie Wells, Formidable Forms

9. Connect Their Digital Experiences to In-Person Ones

“You can have more personal interactions with your local audience by giving them a promo code that they can activate in-store by mentioning the deal to your cashier. These small but important interactions will help you build rapport with local customers, which is bound to lead to more sales and engagement opportunities.” ~ John Brackett, Smash Balloon LLC

10. Go Where Your Customers Go

“One of the best ways to know your customers is to be where they are — at events, trade shows and concerts. Depending on the location you’re at, you can have conversations about the product, get direct feedback and, best of all, hear what they’d like to see from your brand. This is one of the best ways to build a brand because it shows you care about them and are building solutions for them.” ~ Candice Georgiadis, Digital Day

11. Invite Them to Your Store

“Invite them to call or visit your nearby store. Use your digital ads as lead generators to ultimately drive local foot traffic. That way, you can demonstrate your products and services in person, which allows you to go further in depth about their benefits and advantages over competitors’. This goes a long way as it’s easier to be persuasive in face-to-face interactions.” ~ Firas Kittaneh, Amerisleep Mattress

Image: Depositphotos

This article, “Marketing Locally? 11 Ways to Make Your Interactions More Personal” was first published on Small Business Trends