An overwhelming number of local businesses across the United States have struggled over the past year due to the pandemic. So, it is no surprise that consumers’ desire to buy and support local businesses continues to grow exponentially.

Why People Shop Small
Credit: Intuit Mint, 2021

In a recent survey, 70% of consumers say they are currently supporting local businesses. 57% of them do it to keep the money close to home, and 38% want to feel connected with their community. So now more than ever it’s important to make your brand known!

Don’t assume everyone in town has heard of your brand. Word of mouth will only get you so far. Putting effort toward building awareness of your brand in your community is crucial and will drive people in the door now and down the line when they need your services in the future.

If you are ready to start increasing the visibility of your company in the local area, here are seven ideas to get you started.

1. Eye-Catching Design

The best way to gain attention is to brand everything – signs, posters, collateral, apparel. But even more importantly, it is to make sure that the design of those items will catch the attention of people viewing them. While there is no one way to do this, here are a few things to consider:

  • Use color to evoke emotion and grab focus. The colors red, yellow, green, and pink are said to be the four most eye-catching colors.
  • Keep it simple.
  • Use contrast to make it easy to read.

2. Consistency Across All Advertising

To solidify brand recognition, you need to repeatedly expose people with the same message, look, and feel. Consistency will help shape the perception of your brand, build trust and loyalty with your customers, and differentiate your company from your competitors.

3. Accurate and Verified Google My Business Listing

Probably the most important step a business can take these days is to optimize their Google My Business listing. Considering 46% of all Google searches are looking for local information, you want to be sure that you show up right away and the information provided is correct.

4. Social Media

Out of sight, out of mind goes for social media too.  Using platforms like Facebook and Instagram is a great way to engage with your customers, but it is important to post regularly. Make sure you follow the 80/20 rule. While 20% of your posting can be sales-related, the other 80% should be fun and informational.

5. Get Involved in the Community

Whether you have an employee sports team or a group that volunteers every holiday at the food bank, find ways to stay active in the community. And don’t forget, brand visibility is everything. Have your team members wear branded apparel when they are out and about.

6. Sponsor a Local Charity or Event

Show everyone that your business wants to build up the community around it. Sponsorships can be done in a variety of different ways. The most obvious is contributing financially to a cause or event. Another great idea is to offer your services. For example, partner with an organization like Dress for Success by providing mock interviews for the women they serve.

7. Local Influencers

When you hear the word “influencer,” most people automatically think of celebrities. However, an influencer can be anyone that people listen to and affect people’s choices. Give them a win-win offer.  Take a local fitness enthusiast, for example. He teaches at five different local gyms and has a large local social media following. Give him free samples in exchange for reviews or a discount if he becomes a brand ambassador.

By taking just a few of these ideas, you can begin building brand recognition and, as a result, increase sales over time. Need help getting started? From social media management to ensuring you have accurate and verified business listings, Vivial has you covered.  Contact our team of digital experts today!