Social media, Local SEO, and Review Management are essential to small business marketing. They are a few of the main elements that enable your company to be found in the first place, to then be selected or chosen by your customer or client, and post-transaction, to help you stay connected with them. The art of doing these things well and with consistency will help new customers look at your business as the obvious choice.
In running a small business, your time is limited, and we often see a lack of a plan for handling these essential marketing tasks with a consistent approach. Those businesses who do adopt a strategy for their Local Marketing may also find themselves frustrated with the constant barrage of changes which are inherent to utilizing Google, Facebook, Instagram, Yelp and others.
At OMG National, one of the fundamental elements of our Local Marketing and Ad products is that they are dynamic, built to adapt as rules change or new trends develop. Case in point would be with Google. As Google strives to continue its mission of being where the world goes to get its information, a telling new wrinkle has emerged. This change has made your small business reviews even more important.
Reviews are as old as time, what was once word of mouth, printed in Yellow Pages, or acted out on tv and radio, are now online and are far more genuine. Your customer can help or hurt your business from behind their phone or keyboard, and your next customer can see how you react. This greater transparency is good for the consumer but can be punishing for the business owner who is not paying attention Employing a strategy for monitoring all review and social sites for these reviews and other company mentions is the first step. Properly responding to them, whether the reviews are positive or negative and the amount of time it takes to do so just got more important.
For two decades, Google Ads have been a marketplace where your business can run ads that help bring in new business. Just about any service-related search yields a myriad of ad results… at the top and bottom of the page and sometimes along the margin, popular searches can show your customer 10, 20 sometimes more ads to choose from. This list of one-sided messages (ads) from the business to the consumer, over the years, have become less trusted and more institutional. Google has realized this and recently made a major change which demonstrates a trend towards quality of advertiser over quantity.
The advent of their Local Services Ads product brought with it a new list of things an advertiser must have in order to get approved for running their ads. One of the biggest was a minimum number of 3, 4 or 5-star reviews. In addition to specific licensing and insurance information which is based on the industry, reviews have emerged as a focal point for how Google prioritizes and enables these new ads.
To summarize, your Local Marketing strategy is going to need to adapt to the ever-changing conditions if it is to succeed for the long haul. OMG created its first version of Local Marketing Essentials in 2010 and has continued to invest in dynamic improvements to account for all the change.
We ensure our clients understand the value of their customer’s reviews, beyond the obvious value of encouraging someone who is considering the company, to take the next step, and into their value as ranking factors for Local SEO and into a qualifying requirement for the newest type of Google Ads.
As one of the ways we are helping our clients to encourage more reviews, we recently added personalized QR codes to our Local Marketing Essentials program. These codes can be placed at the point of sale, printed on an invoice, or used anywhere that would make it convenient for the customer to leave them a quick and hopefully positive review. As new reviews are received, OMG’s team is responding to each, ensuring that the public understands how well the company is handling any issues that arise.
Staying on top of your reviews is one key to a successful Local Marketing strategy. When combined with an effective social media plan and a well-developed build out across the many directory sites that appear in keyword searches, you’ve got a solid foundational Local SEO approach.
OMG National has provided thousands of companies its Local Marketing Essentials program. It’s a dynamic package with expert dedicated support which will help your company:
- Get Found with a comprehensive buildout across important industry related sites
- Get Selected with personalized content and an abundance of positive reviews
- Stay in Touch with targeted creative posts to Facebook, Instagram and others
Find out more by visiting omgnational.com or visit our blog for the latest information, tips, trends and more!