How to Generate Leads for Local Businesses Using These 7 Online Marketing Strategies

If you’ve driven around your local city area you’ve probably noticed some businesses have closed down because they couldn’t afford to keep them open. One of the main problems for local businesses is to generate enough leads to stay in business. If there are no new leads business soon dries up.

Local business owners traditionally rely on yellow page or newspaper ads. These can cost 1000s of dollars a month and have become ineffective because customers are now using the Net to find local products and services.

Benefits of online marketing strategies for local businesses:

  • Inexpensive
  • Ability to track amount of visitors
  • Build customer trust and loyalty
  • Attract business from multiple geographical locations
  • Create an online brochure (website)
  • Display ads or coupons that can be easily updated or changed
  • Create an online newsletter to notify customers about sales
  • Online strategies to generate local business leads

1. Create a website

A website can serve as an online brochure to display your contact information, photos, offer tips and coupons plus add content that will pre-sell your customers. Once your website is online you can easily refer customers to it when you contact them. They can also access the website from their homes or cell phones.

2. Write a newsletter

If you place a subscription form on your website it enables you to capture leads then send them new information on a regular basis. This helps win their trust and builds long term relationships. Whenever you have a new promotion or sale you can send it to them with one click of your mouse.

2. Article marketing

Offering content that shows the benefits of your products and services, how to use them, frequently asked questions, troubling shooting tips, etc will help your customers make more informed decisions. If you send these articles to online publications in your niche they’ll generate new leads.

3. Press release

Sending out a press release to publications in your area can generate a ton of leads. For example if one local newspaper writes about your business it will potentially reach 1000s of new customers.

4. Geo-targeted pay per click advertising

This method generates immediate traffic. Google AdWords are ads that are displayed down the right side of the search engine results pages. Simply create a Google AdWords account then write an ad that targets keywords related to your business (ie cities, counties, towns). When a person clicks on your ad they get directed to your website. The costs will depend on how much you pay per click. The more clicks your ad receives the more you pay.

5. Interactivity using social media applications

Nowadays many people use Blogs, Twitter, FaceBook and YouTube to stay in touch with their friends or show off their latest creations. Some of the large stores (e.g. Sears, Macy’s, BestBuy) are now using social media applications to interact with their customers. Through this interaction they develop relationships which enables them to promote and sell their products.

6. Video marketing

Online video marketing is effective because most people grew up watching television or playing video games. Some of the ways to use videos to generate leads include creating:

  • video sales page
  • videos that show how to use your products
  • video testimonials

Videos can easily be added to your website so people can view them anytime.

7. Search engine optimization

If people find your website by entering a keyword in the search engines you’ll receive free ongoing traffic. By optimizing your website for the search engines you can achieve top rankings in the search engines for keywords related to your business and receive ongoing traffic to your website.

Start an online marketing campaign for your local business before your competitors learn how to do it or your business dries up. You’ll capture business that may normally go to your competitors because you have extended your wider audience.

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Herman Drost is the Certified Internet Webmaster (CIW)
owner and author of