The beauty of social media marketing is the ability to easily connect with potential customers from around the world. However, many companies on social are either small- or mid-sized, relying mostly on consumers who are within driving distance. So, for these companies, knowing how to use social media campaigns for local level marketing is essential.

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One advantage that smaller, local companies have over larger corporations is they can focus on a much smaller and more targeted audience. This creates the ability to make more personal connections, and build greater brand loyalty, which fits into the purpose of social media marketing. So, if you own or operate a local business, social media is a great tool that can be used to generate more traffic to your store, both on and offline.

Nevertheless, the prime reason to start utilizing social media at a local level is consumer expectations. In today’s world, when a person has a question about a business, product, or service, they are often visiting social media first, typically Facebook or Twitter. Social media is where your customers are, and your customers have come to expect companies to be there, ready to assist, as well.

While there is a cost and time investment, social media campaigns for local level marketing are relatively easy and are extremely effective. Here’s how you can take advantage of social media by following some of these great tips.

  1. Find the Locals – Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social platforms allow users to create groups by topic. So, joining location-specific groups or creating one of your own is a great way to focus on your nearby audience. Nevertheless, you are not locked into just the major well-known platforms. Depending on the area, it is possible for you to find niche sites designed for locals. These sites may not be specifically social media websites but could help in providing support for online social networking, including an online message board, Q&A forums, and blogs.
  2. Directly Target Neighbourhoods– The majority of websites will target a broad audience, but you can find those that allow users to select a specific city, neighbourhoodor postal code. Review sites like Yelp are a good example of this. There are also social media sites like EveryBlock, a social network for neighborhoods that verifies residents, or features that allows direct neighbourhoods to be targeted and “talked” to. That said, it is important to understand that towns and neighborhoods have their own unique personalities and issues. In order to make real connections, it is important to talk about their specific wants, needs, interests, and concerns.
  3. Localize Hashtags and Keywords – When writing about your business or commenting on social media, use location-specific and culture-specific hashtags and keywords.  That said, while it is important to use the actual names of towns and neighbourhoods, make sure you also use language familiar to your audience, including local nicknames for attractions, roadways, or other terms. This is a good way to stand out compared to national or international corporations who are trying to fit in.
  4. Engage with Other Local Businesses – Social media websites are a great way to network with other business owners. But another great benefit is collective local level marketing. For example, if you are a bakery and a nearby shop is having a 50 percent off sale, consider sharing it with your audience while commenting a call to action directing consumers to your bakery afterwards for a treat. This results in creating reciprocal social marking assistance, while also calling generating traffic to your store.
  5. Highlight your Local Community – Many people are interested in receiving updates on local news and events. Social media users often respond well when businesses demonstrate they are actually interested and a part of their community. Consider posting updates of local events, photos of your favorite local sites, information about local charities, or other items of local interest. This type of engagement shows your followers that you are not just a faceless corporation, but one that is actively involved.

While social media can connect you globally, it is important to not forget about those locally as well. By using the above 5 tactics, you’ll be able to build a strong connection with your nearby consumers, helping to grow awareness and traffic both on and offline.