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How To Uncover Your Hyper Local Market

Updated March 31, 2020

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

In today’s commercial landscape, the customer is king. Every business leader knows it — a business can’t last long without someone to buy their products or services.

That said, “someone” isn’t exactly what you’re looking for, either. That’s why most businesses have dozens of buyer personas — after all, knowing who you’re selling to is the key to delivering an effective message. And for almost every business out there, there’s a tremendous benefit to local targeting.

Building a presence at the local level requires more than strategic SEO. To garner local recognition, you’ll need to focus on two areas: brand-building locally and local leads and sales. Getting here means brand-building on the local level, starting with these simple, effective strategies.

Community Members and Local Influencers

“Influencer” marketing doesn’t always mean tapping global A-listers — in fact, often the most influential consumers are right down the block. Tap into these neighborhood insiders, build a strong relationship and impress them with your products and services, and you’ll gain access to their inner circle — people who can move the need for your brand.

To bulk up your local influencer squad:

  • Find out which local influencers people in your target audience follow
  • Create a content calendar that’s relatable for them
  • Ask for quotes, comments and other feedback
  • Implement a content strategy that will drive engagement and expand your reach

Curated Content and In-depth Features May Help

Develop your own positive press or engaging content. For example, let’s say your brand offers locally-made coffee. You could interview five area café owners about what goes into a good cup of coffee. For an in-depth feature, talk to a local nonprofit leader about the importance of local businesses for job creation and the area economy, or interview someone involved in your roasting process.
From there, write a dynamic article or blog post, with an eye on SEO impact. And don’t forget, the more backlinks you get, the better your organic search results will be. So, post as much original content as possible.

Hit Local Events

Attending or, even, sponsoring local events is a great way to build brand recognition within a specific community. Chances are, even if you live in a smaller community, you’ll have tons of options to choose from, from parades to youth sports to seasonal events, to corporate events such as conferences and networking events ideal for B2B.
Again, backlinks are great for SEO. Ask the event host to put together a summary of the evening and make sure you’re mentioned and linked.

Sponsor Local Events and Organizations

Little League teams, nonprofits, blogs… tons of local organizations need sponsors. Just beware: the return on investment can be hit or miss. Sponsorships won’t necessarily drive traffic but they will get your name out there.
If you opt to go this route, look for causes, programming and events that make sense for your industry, and be on the lookout for networking opportunities — often you’ll have a chance to mix and mingle with sponsors or other relevant participants. Also, be open to both monetary contributions — traditional sponsorship fees — as well as in-kind donations. Often, you can be front-and-center as a sponsor by offering free products or services.
There’s also SEO potential here, so backlink, backlink, backlink. Ask the group your sponsorship to include backlinks for your business on their blog, website or social media.

Partner with Local Businesses

Likely there’s a business or businesses that could be a true complement to yours — so why not partner with them?
For example, if you’re a real estate agent, there are tons of potential partners out there — mortgage brokers and lenders, contractors, home inspectors and more. Running a cycling shop? What about the store that sells athletic gear or sneakers? By partnering up and driving relevant business to one another, you both win, as does your customer — they get a seamless path to closing the loop on their latest purchase.
Once you’ve identified a potential partner, come to the table with ways you can help them — don’t go in looking for them to provide an idea or solution. And, again, look beyond revenue. Maybe that local coffee shop will let you leave flyers out, or will hand out coupons driving to your store in exchange for you selling their coffee onsite.

Look for Local Lead Generation

Google Ads are an asset for any business looking to target a hyperlocal market. They can quickly result in new leads and sales that are well worth the investment. Another good go-to is paid social media. Facebook and LinkedIn offer hyperlocal — and very affordable — options. On either platform, you can set geolocation controls for targeting and hone in on a local audience with a few clicks.

When advertising locally, be sure to embrace the local nature of it all. Use local graphics, language and themes so your audience knows this is for ME. Beyond that, be sure you’re driving them to a consistent and equally relevant landing page. Disjointed ads can spell disaster for conversion rates.

All of this said local business marketing can take a bit of time to refine and build-out. Keep testing and keep optimizing and, soon enough, you’ll figure out a comprehensive strategy that syncs with your goals — and your customers.