How to Grow your Business by Being a Local Expert

You know that advertising on the Internet and in the local media is one way to get the word out about your business. But you’re also concerned that it’s difficult for your marketing materials to stand out in a crowded field. If you want to distinguish your business in the local community, try becoming an expert in your field using the following strategies.

Give Presentations

Local organizations are always looking for interesting speakers to highlight their meetings. Call a few groups and offer to do a short presentation for them. Think about the members and what problems they are likely to have. Then talk about solutions that bring in your products or services. For example, if you are a dog groomer, offer tips on keeping a dog’s coat shiny and well-groomed for the local humane association. If you give enough presentations for the same groups, a member might think of you when shopping for goods or services related to your business.

Write for the Paper

Contact your local paper and offer to write an article or two that would be helpful to their readers. Again, focus on providing real solutions to problems rather than simply advertising your company. After you have created several articles and received good responses, ask the paper if they would be interested in a regular weekly column. Note that if your subject matter is widespread enough, such as basic lawn care or auto repair, you can offer the same article and column to several community papers, as long as they don’t compete with each other. You can therefore get your business known over a wider area. If the local paper needs an opinion in your area of expertise, you will be on their radar.

Run a Contest or Be a Judge

If a local event or charity fund-raiser is coming up, approach the organizers and talk about running a contest related to your product offerings. (If you’re already becoming a community expert, organizations may start approaching you instead.) Say that you’ll be happy to donate prizes if you can judge the winning entries. Even if your prize consists of intangible services, such as small business accounting or website design, be sure to have something physical to hand to the winner, such as a certificate or medal. This will provide photo opportunities that can put your pictures in the paper or on a community website.

Remember, running a business successfully does not need to be complicated.  Keep it simple!

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