There are many definitions but basically, local marketing is about targeting a specific group of prospects in a restricted geographical area.
For any business focused on local marketing potential customers are:
- Those who are likely to search for a local provider of products or services online with a location based search term (e.g. Family law solicitor in Leeds).
- Those who favour using local suppliers wherever practical.
- Those who primarily rely on word of mouth recommendations from family, friends and colleagues when choosing a provider.
Like any marketing process, the key issues to consider are who to target, how to reach them and the message. An entirely different mix of marketing tactics tends to be used to those used by a national firm.
The message (and Brand) must have a local focus. The business should seek to embed itself in the local community. To succeed the business must cultivate its local profile and that can take time.
There may be fewer prospects to target in a restricted area. Local competition can be intense but on the plus side marketing costs can be much lower and marketing simpler at the local level.
Local marketing is about capturing those customers specifically interested in suppliers of products or services in their immediate vicinity. Promoting a local business is about ensuring the business is found online if a prospect uses a location based search term. Finally, it is about building credibility and concentrating on tactics that generate referrals.
A wide range of tools and services are available to help (many of them free) but surprisingly, many businesses are failing to use them or are not using them effectively.