How to go about marketing your local business?

by bsurb
35 replies
Hey guys. Im here today to get some insight on ways to market a local business. I offer custom vinyl graphics, web design, logos, t-shirts and hats. My main money makers are vinyl lettering and the web design. I work with mainly small businesses who don't have advertisements on their vehicle windows or trailers and I install it. My business has officially started in January. Iv kept track of every penny iv made, I filed and got my LLC... all of that good stuff. I got my website going but pretty much all of my business comes straight from Facebook and word of mouth. But I want to change that.

What are some marketing strategies that I could work on to find more business.. eventually competing with other companies in my area.

Iv ran a couple of Facebook ads trying to test audiences. I landed one minor job and only spending $30 in ads. (but it might have been luck).

Any ideas for me would be greatly appreciated.
#business #local #marketing
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  • Profile picture of the author palmtreelife
    Paid advertising is not luck if you do it right. It's luck if you do it wrong and get a hit. If paid ads got you one job, why not analyze that a bit more and see why it may have worked? Keep testing and focusing your ads to your target audience.

    Where is the word of mouth business coming from? Friends and family or referrals?

    For vinyl graphics on cars, you could offer to do some free work for car dealerships for their own branding in exchange for being their go to person when one of their clients asks them about vinyl graphics. You could do that for every car dealership in town. It gets your name out their in the car industry at the very least. This could be replicated with other car type washes, mechanics etc.

    Is your business a print on demand type of thing? I don't see any other connection. You may want to consider separating these businesses and become laser focused with your marketing.

    I would market to a specific demographic to be the "best vinyl graphic designer/installer in the area" and a separate demographic for "the best web designer for local businesses" etc etc.

    I don't think it's a good idea to be the jack of all trades in a highly competitive market as yours. It's very difficult to stand out. It's easier to stand out if you break down each of those skills you have and get creative with them.
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    • Profile picture of the author bsurb
      Well what I did with the facebook ad, I took a time lapse video (10-15 sec in total) of me installing a piece of vinyl on a enclosed trailer. The ad type I chose was to get page likes. i ran the ad for roughly 5-6 days, got just under 60 page likes, 1.5K views. But I wasn't targeting any certain interest group. I just chose my city and 10 miles surrounding, 25+60 in age and both male and female...

      The thing is with vehicle graphics. EVERYONE can benefit from them Whether you're a realtor, lawn care business, or just a person who wants a cool phrase on the back of their car. I am open to working with anybody who comes to me wanting a decal.

      And what separates me from most companies, I work out from my house and my response time is instantly. I give someone a quote as soon as they connect with me or I get a tag from someone on Facebook.. then I get their graphic done within that day usually. And they are amazed because these actual local companies will take a week to do something so small... And I also can bring my machine to a person or business and cut graphics ON the spot. Nobody else offers that.

      I do know a lot of people. So I think I will start to work on getting in with dealerships, mechanics things like that.

      And right now word of mouth is coming from Facebook friends who tag me in private facebook groups. People will post asking for recommendations and I will get tagged. I also am apart of many groups and I respond to people who are looking for the same type of services.
      Vinyl Signs & Web Design in Ocala, FL.
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    • Profile picture of the author Amarjeet Verma
      Google Map & SEO is the best for local business, But for the instant business, you should try Google paid ads.

      See How I Rank This Website No#1 on Google With Only 3 Exact Match Anchor Text Backlinks Packers and Movers in Pune - One of the Backlink is Here in My Signature!

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      • Profile picture of the author Md Hasanuzzaman
        Baside Google map, SEO, you can use social media advertising for developing your business.
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        • Profile picture of the author HarveyEdward
          agree with you but another local platform available on the internet like this google map.
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  • Profile picture of the author jefrin adams
    By using paid ads,Facebook ads your business get on moving to high range
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  • Profile picture of the author Jamell
    You are getting traffic from facebook so atleast you know where some of your customers and or prospects are . Maybe you should try geo targeting people on linked in to generate a bigger buzz for your business. Get involved in group chat related to your niches too.
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  • Profile picture of the author Denhei
    You should do google ppc with retargeting. In regards to Facebook - you should join local groups and see if you can post about your business in those groups. I'd also consider listing out who hires you and why - then targeting those people in places like Linkedin. Facebook for something as specific and niche as what you offer could be a huge money pit.
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    • Profile picture of the author bsurb
      I am apart of dozens of different Facebook groups. Word of mouth groups in my area, they allow you to post your business every Friday. But that's not always promised work. Im better off by people tagging me and my business page once they see someone asking for recommendations.

      I am apart of linkedin. Still not 100% on how to use it properly, but I do make posts with the same items I publish on Instagram and Facebook. Things like my logos. Vinyl projects. etc.
      Vinyl Signs & Web Design in Ocala, FL.
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  • Profile picture of the author LindyUK
    Hello bsurb

    Even though we are a large Digital Agency, I'm going to go offline for a moment.

    Your main (and most profitable) sales are to small business's so you should be targeting them directly. I would do this by direct mail, or by actually calling in on small business's and leaving them brochures or flyers.

    If you can not design them yourself (they need to look very professional) you can find flyer designers in fiverr. You can then have them printed at reasonably low cost by online printing companies like Vista. You should be taking photos of your finished artwork to build up your portfolio, so you use the best of these photos in your Flyer.

    Your main selling point (headline and copy on your Flyer), is that for a one time cost their car/truck/van signage (Ad) is going to be seen by hundreds to thousands of people daily. Day after day, week after week and even year after year. This is a very cost effective form of advertising for them. (You should also be taking advantage of signage on your own vehicle, promoting your own services)

    That is one way of getting your message right to your target market and at a very low cost.

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    • Profile picture of the author bsurb
      Lots of good advice there. Thank you. I am actually working on getting brochures designed up front and back to go around and pass them out. I have a Jeep Wrangler that has a lot done to it, so I pull a lot of heads out in traffic and I keep business cards handy. I do have my advertisement on my back glass. Im working on getting a partial wrap for the wrangler because I think that would do a lot more in traffic.

      But yes, I do think I need to go around to small businesses and introduce my self, and put statistics on paper or something that would pursue them that they need some sort of vehicle graphics on their trailer or vehicle.
      Vinyl Signs & Web Design in Ocala, FL.
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  • Originally Posted by bsurb View Post

    . I work with mainly small businesses who don't have advertisements on their vehicle windows or trailers and I install it.
    Have you considered networking with these businesses through your local chamber or business groups?

    Small businesses who don't advertise are usually B2B businesses. Since most of them get their business through referrals, it would make more sense for them to market through business groups. Joining business groups or trade groups could give you the leads you need.
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  • Profile picture of the author Justin evans
    It is unwise to stay only on one channel for customer acquisition. I am glad that you are looking for other methods as well. Social Media and especially Facebook, is an ideal source to attract local potential customers. However, if you are willing to provide your services internationally you have to consider other prospects as well. In Marketing, the first rule is to identify the target audience. After recognizing them, analyze what they use frequently for information, i.e., newspaper, tv, mobile apps, etc. In the case of youngsters, google ads will play a significant role. Learn more about marketing on MobInspire blogs. You may also outsource your marketing tasks to any recognized firm and focuses only on core operations of your business.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mia Davis
    You can do the following things for marketing your local business:
    1. Promote your product on Social media sites
    2. Offer discounts
    3. Run Contests so that more people engaged
    4. Join local groups
    5. Start blogging
    6. Setup free listing with Google

    Hope these things will help you.
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  • Profile picture of the author sgalla414
    I took a course with 3M relating to installing vehicle wraps and in this course they gave a statistic (I can't remember the actual figure now) but it was relating to the cost comparison to radio advertisements, commercials etc. to the advertisement cost of a vehicle wrap per person and the cost of a vinyl vehicle wrap you got FAR more value for your money. I like LindyUK's idea of direct mail and as a suggestion maybe you could include this cost statistic in your direct mail campaign as a way to entice people to use a vehicle wrap. You could probably email 3M directly and ask for a statistic rather than trying to find it on google. I hope this makes sense..
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    • Profile picture of the author bsurb
      Well actually I do see a lot of statistics around all of the time. Car wraps generate about 70,000 impressions per day. Each american who drives will average about 32 miles a day. so numbers are out there.

      I was thinking about running a FB ad for realtors. I do a bunch of work for realtors who need their name, company name and phone number on their window.. so maybe I could try and run an ad targeting people in real estate?
      Vinyl Signs & Web Design in Ocala, FL.
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      • Profile picture of the author sgalla414
        Originally Posted by bsurb View Post

        Well actually I do see a lot of statistics around all of the time. Car wraps generate about 70,000 impressions per day. Each american who drives will average about 32 miles a day. so numbers are out there.

        I was thinking about running a FB ad for realtors. I do a bunch of work for realtors who need their name, company name and phone number on their window.. so maybe I could try and run an ad targeting people in real estate?
        Yep. That is a great idea. Realtors are still a relatively small percentage of the amount of people you could potentially reach. I would also approach your local race track (Cars, gokarts, dirtbikes etc.) I know a company local to me does wraps for ALL the dirt track cars as well as gokarts. If you offer to do one for free for someone as an advertisement for your business this would be a great way to get yourself out there in another "niche" that would use your services.
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  • Profile picture of the author sg999
    I would suggest using highly targeted pay per click ads e.g. Google / Facebook/ Bing & Linkedin.

    Importantly, track EVERYTHING on your website with Google Analytics, so that you or a professional that you hire can make sense of what exactly is happening with the leads that you bring in.
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  • Profile picture of the author hardworker2013
    Focus on facebook ads as it is more targeted traffic, and scale it as your sales grow.
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    • Profile picture of the author bsurb
      Is there a recommended daily budget and for an x amount of days to run the ad? Iv tested a few lately with a $10 and $15 daily budget. Havent really seen much. But I guess its all about targeting and testing.
      Vinyl Signs & Web Design in Ocala, FL.
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  • Profile picture of the author Wizardofwisdom
    What do you know about the effectiveness of having these ads on the vehicles? If you can show that not having them is hurting their business you'll have the beginnings of a marketing campaign. People are always motivated to move away from pain (including the pain of missing out on profits), so I'd start there.

    Do you have a good "before and after" story about how your own business changed after you put the signs on your vehicles? Testimonials from satisfied customers - not about the work, but about the results they got?

    Remember, no one wants a vinyl sign, (hat, t-shirt or anything else)! They want more business. That's what you're really selling.

    How you then advertise will depend on your budget and good targeting.

    Hope that helps! :-)
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    • Profile picture of the author bsurb
      There are statistics out there to show business owners how many daily impressions are possible with vehicle lettering. So thats a start. I have plenty of testimonials on my Facebook.

      But as far as before and after, yes. Just by placing simple business lettering and a phone # on the back of your car, I get calls all of the time while Im driving.

      How can I incorporate this into FB ads?
      Vinyl Signs & Web Design in Ocala, FL.
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    You could always do some direct mail - via a simple postcard. Generate leads then follow up on them until they purchase your services.

    And/or you could take on a more direct approach by offering low cost ebooks about graphic/web design, and then upselling customers to your graphic/web design services.

    Offering images and case studies to give prospects an example of what they can expect from purchasing from you is a good idea too.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rajeev Gaur
    Hi there,

    Check out these tips which might be helpful for your local business -
    • Do some local search marketing
    • Optimize your website for humans and search engines
    • Engage in link building
    • Take advantage of keywords
    • Ask for email addresses
    • Monitor your online reputation
    • Use online networking sites to build a bigger network
    • Get more attendees with Facebook Events and Eventbrite
    • Speaking of social media, it's time to build a better social strategy
    • Try Facebook ads
    • Give live video a try
    • Add video to your Google My Business listing
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  • Profile picture of the author troy23
    I'm guessing you may be in Florida.
    Have you tried using Craigslist Florida and to narrow it down to your area?

    My wife and I have a local business here in London and what has worked for us is a combination of local advertising & Facebook group posting. We have used Facebook ads, but they did not work so well for us. What does work well though is when we run an event through Facebook. Classified ad posting can pick up one or two clients also.
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  • Use the social media, social apps. join Facebook groups, reach out to more people , request for feedback from clients. With the time you understand the demand or choice of people then plan what is need to do.
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  • Profile picture of the author sophie marton
    It is good you already doing paid marketing but you can take some steps that will help you to market your business in the most suitable way
    You have to join a social media group that relevant to your business
    Start writing the blogs or content about your product or services
    Offer the discount to your audience
    List your business in the local business sites
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  • Profile picture of the author Medon
    Of course, I suppose you already have a website. If not ensure that it is up and running. Local SEO will help you reach more people locally. Also, it is good that you have found your way here, keep reading and you will discover why some of us are not leaving warrior forum any sooner.
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  • Profile picture of the author MaxFeerden
    You will be helped by social networks, google maps and SEO. This is a great solution for attracting a large number of customers.
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    • Profile picture of the author JUnderwood
      This is a great budget solution for the site. They will select and do an excellent job to promote the site.
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  • Profile picture of the author Radhika Shah
    Go for a local business listing and also PPC advertising will be help for local businesses marketing
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  • Profile picture of the author seokohli
    I would say, keep doing what you're doing because it's generating business for you. In-fact, add more budget & see if you get more business or not. If you do then instead of learning & trying new things with mistakes, keep focusing on what's beneficial for you.

    Rest, people has given lot of suggestions above so if you follow them, you'll definitely get more traffic & hence more leads.
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  • Profile picture of the author Medon
    Yes, the kind of services you are offering is top-notch. I believe you will rip more if you focus your effort on marketing what you do. If you were able to secure a job by spending $30 on adds, you need to move it a notch higher. It is a sign that the sky is the limit.
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  • Contact your local economic development department. Most keep a running list of new companies starting in your area. You can reach them at the ground level of starting. I did this some years back. They would send a list to me every month with the new businesses. I sent postcards out and the followes up with phone calls. I was able to get new clients this way for my graphic design business.
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  • Profile picture of the author rain21
    I promote my business using facebook ads and it works good in here.
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