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13 Effective Marketing Strategies for Reaching Metropolitan Communities

To help businesses effectively reach their local communities, we asked thirteen marketing professionals and business leaders for their top local marketing strategies. From sponsoring local sports teams to utilizing local resources and workforce, directors to marketing strategists share their insights on how to make a significant impact on your community.

  • Sponsor Local Sports Teams

  • Optimize Your Google My Business Profile

  • Write a Locally Optimized Guest Post

  • Host Free Workshops and Masterclasses

  • Form Community Partnerships

  • Participate in Local "Best of" Contests

  • Implement Local SEO

  • Use Well-Targeted Google Ads

  • Engage at Local Gathering Spots

  • Leverage Social Media Marketing

  • Become a Community Expert on Social Media

  • Connect and Support Local Schools

  • Utilize Local Resources and Workforce

Sponsor Local Sports Teams

A local marketing strategy I highly recommend is sponsoring local sports teams. This approach provides a unique opportunity to engage with the community and build brand visibility in a positive, grassroots setting.

By supporting local sports, businesses not only gain exposure through team uniforms, events, and media but also align their brand with community values and healthy living. We experienced significant community engagement and brand recognition uplift by sponsoring a youth soccer team, which not only boosted our local profile but also strengthened customer loyalty. This strategy effectively combines community support with targeted local marketing.

Optimize Your Google My Business Profile

For local businesses, or digital businesses that have a service area, I recommend a three-step marketing strategy to reach local customers and create a connection with the community.

First, start by optimizing your Google Business profile and use it as an additional channel for social media. Repurpose content, focusing on offers, events, and FAQs that include keywords you want to rank for, and that answer what your customers are searching on maps or 'near me' queries.

Second, send an after-service survey to your customers and include an invitation to post a review on Google and their favorite social media channels.

Last, leverage the power of collaboration and participate in, or organize, events in your community. These can be low-cost events to attract a wider audience, a referral program, or sponsoring a local cause or organization.

This local marketing strategy will help local businesses reach their community and establish themselves as a trustworthy brand.

Gabby Rendon, Founder and SEO Marketing Strategist, Gabby Rendon Marketing LLC

Write a Locally Optimized Guest Post

To reach your local community, consider a guest post that will effectively reach that audience. Be sure to have local keywords in mind to optimize it for SEO so that it ranks. And when it comes to a topic, selectively choose one that will engage your audience and start up a conversation. This way, it can be easily shared on your social media platforms as well.

Host Free Workshops and Masterclasses

One local marketing strategy is to organize free workshops or masterclasses to reach out to the community. During the event, invite people to subscribe to your e-newsletter or Telegram group. In this way, I will be constantly in touch with the people on the ground and receive feedback from them.

Mei Ping Mak, Director of SEO and Web, Weave Asia

Form Community Partnerships

Community partnerships are one local marketing strategy I'd recommend for effectively reaching your community. Collaborate with local businesses, nonprofits, or community organizations to co-host events, sponsor local initiatives, or engage in joint marketing efforts. These partnerships expand your reach and demonstrate your commitment to the community, fostering trust and loyalty among local customers.

Additionally, consider leveraging local and social media platforms to promote your involvement and engagement in community activities, reinforcing your brand's presence and connection with the local audience.

Khurram Mir, Founder and Chief Marketing Officer, Kualitee

Participate in Local "Best of" Contests

Find any local "best of" contests and ask your customers to vote for you in those contests. Winning a contest like that is an easy way to have additional social proof beyond testimonials. If or when you win the contest, announce it to your customers, thank them for their help in voting, and provide them a special promotion in celebration and appreciation.

Tony Wagner, Email Marketing Manager, Strategic America

Implement Local SEO

For a business or entrepreneur of any size, implementing an effective local SEO strategy is crucial to ensuring you are found online. Whether you own a brick-and-mortar location or a strictly online business, the first place consumers search for a business, product, or service is Google Search.

Ensure that your business not only shows up on Google Search, but also shows up in one of the first three listings by regularly optimizing and updating your Google Business Profile. A Google Business Profile is a free tool by Google that helps businesses of any size reach their local consumers.

Send your current customers to your profile to leave reviews to increase your ranking, regularly post business updates, and adjust your hours for any special holiday closings to continue climbing your local ranking.

Use Well-Targeted Google Ads

One of the most effective ways to market to your community is through well-targeted Google Ads.

By only targeting the specific geographic area that your business serves, you can keep costs down while reaching the people you want to serve. Search ads can be great for local businesses with limited budgets who want to engage with people who are actively looking to purchase your products or services.

This isn't the flashiest approach to marketing, but it can produce solid returns, which is the end goal.

Engage at Local Gathering Spots

Go where the local folks go. The local farmers' market and the park are some of the best places for organic exposure. The more and better impressions you make—literally and figuratively—the more likely it is for locals to love your brand.

Leverage Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing has been an effective strategy that I have used for local marketing. This is a very effective form of marketing.

In order to succeed, first, identify the needs of your target audience and start creating content. Test different types of content, such as educational, informational, entertaining, human interest, etc. Once you identify the type of content they are interested in, then have a content strategy to produce and distribute that content to different social media platforms.

The best content format that has worked really well for me is video. You can create long-form or short-form videos and customize them for different platforms.

Sam Kariuki, Media Buyer and Digital Marketing Strategist, Owendenny

Become a Community Expert on Social Media

If you're trying to tap into a local sector on social media, one of the best ways to accomplish this is by showcasing your knowledge of the area.

People online are always looking for new things to do with friends and family, new recommendations for places to eat and visit, and seasonal events. By establishing yourself as a resource with the latest in your community, people will know to head to your page for the most up-to-date recommendations.

If people visit the places you suggest and have the same great experiences, you'll also establish yourself as a credible community leader.

This online approach also allows you to support local people and businesses in your area. Small businesses may be unable to get the word out about their business through marketing. Testimonials are one of the best free ways to show that you care about their success.

As you share these places and things to do in your area, be sure to engage with your audience genuinely!

Connect and Support Local Schools

Connect with local schools. These are local institutions that will generally have a large reservoir of positive PR to lend you. You can help by sponsoring fundraisers for school clubs and activities, donating supplies, buying ad space in the local football stadium or basketball arena, or sponsoring scholarships.

All of these moves will boost your brand recognition and give you plenty of positive PR within the community.

Nick Valentino, VP of Market Operations, Bellhop

Utilize Local Resources and Workforce

Using local resources—from the workforce to materials—serves as an innovative marketing strategy. It starts with recruitment; hiring from within the community lays the foundation for a business that is of the people, by the people. You can also leverage your local team's knowledge of the community's needs and preferences to serve your local customers better.

Sourcing local raw materials reinforces this bond, weaving your business into the community fabric. In doing so, you create a symbiotic relationship; your business supports the local economy, and the community's support bolsters your business. This mutual benefit is the essence of local engagement—it's a two-way street where every contribution and every gain is shared, fostering a stronger, resilient community bond.

Nikhil Jogia, Managing Director, Jogia Diamonds

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