I’ve written before about local marketing but how does that differ for companies that offer a service like painting, hairdressing, even mobile detailing? The hands-on nature of service businesses makes local marketing particularly valuable. So let’s deep dive and take a closer look at local marketing techniques for service companies.
Targeted PPC Ads
Just because you’re small doesn’t mean you can’t win the PPC game, even against bigger players with deeper pockets. The trick is to be very, very targeted. Bid only on keywords that imply immediate purchase. Target only the very specific geographic regions in which you serve. And bid only when you’re operating. That way, you get people ready to buy your service now, making for a higher ROI.
Not sure? Testing will always help you. Set aside a small budget to narrow in on the right copy and images of your ads. Then, aggressively bid on your keywords, making sure you are narrow in your focus. After some time, test a more conservative bidding approach. After a few months, you’ll be better able to determine the right cost/benefit ratio that works for you. Just remember, you can’t simply “set it and forget it” with PPC. It’s something that must be managed and continually optimized. But boy is it worth it!
Use the Village
Chances are, you know other local business that offer complementary products and services. Why not partner up? If you’re a hair stylist in the same building as a nail salon, why not promote a complete day of beauty to each of your customer lists? Or if you’re a mobile detailing business serving Clarington, you could partner with a local coffee shop where they will offer mobile detailing to customers while they’re getting coffee.
This is something the big guys can’t do well in local markets, so take advantage of it and start looking for partners for some win-wins.
Make the List
I would be remiss if I didn’t include something about listing sites when talking about local marketing. But in addition to traditional sites like Yelp, and TripAdvisor, if you are a dentist or painter, you most definitely need to get listed on sites that include customer recommendations. Sites like Angie’s List, HomeAdvisor and even Houzz if you’re an interior decorator.
Chances are, you already know the sites, so optimize your listing by encouraging people to write a review, or link to your reviews on other listing sites.
Play to the neighborhoods you serve by offering discounts to locals. If you’re an eye-doctor in a strip mall, offer discounts to strip-mall employees. If you have a dry cleaner in an office building, why not give an office worker 2 for 1 promotion. And it’s always good to be a part of other, local, promotion cards that target discounts for students of specific schools, subscribers or readers of specific media outlets, etc.
Focusing your small business resources on local marketing pays higher dividends for service companies, simply because of the nature of the business.