If you’re in the local business industry and you’re looking to take your marketing strategy to the next level, it’s important to get creative with the tactics you use to generate leads. You don’t want to get stuck in a rut – especially not when there are so many other ways to generate leads that aren’t being used by your competitors! These 10 ways to explode your leads with local search can put you on top of your market, while also keeping your customers happy.

1) Planning your campaign

A big part of achieving success with your local search campaign is having a well-organized plan. You don’t need a detailed calendar, but you do need a list of what needs to be done and when it needs to get done by. This way, you won’t feel like you have too much on your plate or miss out on anything important, while also preventing scheduling conflicts that can harm your overall campaign. For example, if you have a backlink-building campaign coming up in two weeks, that could mean taking an extra day or two to prepare beforehand. It’s okay not being perfect with things like these—better sooner than later!

2) Understanding local search

Understanding local search is key to converting more of your prospects into leads and then customers. In other words, it’s critical for local businesses with brick-and-mortar storefronts. Local search consists of services like Google Places, Yahoo! Local and Yelp that help users find businesses in their specific geographic area. While local search is important no matter what business you’re in, some industries—like hospitality—are more reliant on it than others. Hotels, for example, make up a big chunk of travel reservations. That means you have to get really good at local search or risk getting lost among competitors who are better at it than you are. Use our 10 steps below to increase your visibility in local search results so you can boost leads today!

3) Get those reviews!

Online reviews are one of your best forms of free advertising. Even if you get bad reviews, they’re great for customer feedback—but you should always do what you can to avoid getting negative feedback in the first place. Give your customers a reason to come back by leaving favorable, honest reviews on their behalf for other businesses. It will help them build trust with their own customers, and will likely pay off with increased business for you. Make sure every positive review comes with an invitation: that way you’ll ensure that all of your positive reviews turn into leads and eventual conversions. Positive experiences lead to satisfied customers who then share those great experiences with others, which leads to more sales!

4) Drive traffic in person

Have you ever noticed how people are much more likely to fill out a form when they’re face-to-face with you? They don’t have time for games, and it shows. Get your business in front of potential customers in person. Meet them where they are and introduce yourself—all while looking good! This is one way search engine optimization (SEO) can work for small businesses. A lot of consumers aren’t sure what they want when they type into Google; so instead of racking their brains trying to guess what they were searching for, or sifting through results hoping to find something relevant, you show up right in front of them.

5) Building your brand at the same time

So, if you already have a brick-and-mortar location, how can you use it as a tool to drive customers online? For starters, make sure your local listing is as complete and accurate as possible. Then link your business’ social media profiles on sites like Facebook, Twitter and Yelp (if applicable) from your listing. At a bare minimum, make sure Google knows about your site—complete with a strong meta description that draws in visitors looking for what you offer (think copy that says something like: Looking for hair removal services? Come see us today!). Here are more tips to get started with local search marketing.

6) Optimize for local search with videos, lists and images.

These three kinds of content, along with a video and an additional list, are prime targets for local SEO. If you don’t have one already, build a Google My Business page and fill it out with all your business information. Don’t forget to verify it and add some high-quality photos—your customers will appreciate them and Google likes them too. You can link to your GMB from most social media profiles (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest) but there is no need to create separate local pages for each platform; just be sure that your physical address is listed on every page you own.

7) Identify your ideal customer’s pain points

Before you can tell your potential customers about how you’re going to solve their problems, you have to identify what those pain points are. What is it that they hate? What is it that they feel trapped by? Spend some time getting out of your own head and into theirs. Answering these questions will help you come up with relevant topics for blogs and social media posts, which should resonate with your target audience. If possible, speak directly with or ask your ideal customers what exactly frustrates them so that you can be sure that you’re talking about what they want and need—and not just a random gripe or pet peeve.

8) Create engagement through calls-to-action

When most people think of search engine optimization, they think about keywords and links. While it’s true that these elements are critical for your site, there’s one more important element: engagement. In order to get high rankings, your audience needs to be actively interacting with your website. For example, you could add a call-to-action at the end of each post that makes it simple for users to download something (for example, an eBook). Doing so will lead people to not only return but also increase their engagement by encouraging them complete an action on your site.

9) Share on every social network with hashtags relevant to your business.

When searching for local business information, people are more likely to use social media networks, such as Facebook and Twitter. If your business shows up in their searches then they will be more likely to check out your profile, take note of what you offer and contact you directly. If you can get a good following on one or more of these sites it might well lead to an increase in enquiries that can easily translate into more leads coming your way. It’s worth investing some time on here so that your business has every chance of being seen by as many people as possible when they are looking for something like yours.

10) Hand out high quality magnets at events.

The goal is simple, get your business out there. But sometimes we get stuck thinking of ways to do that and often think it has to cost a fortune. If you’re just starting up, perhaps try giving away magnets with your logo or website address at events in your area or offer them free when someone stops by your office. This will help people remember who you are and how they can find you later on if they need a product or service like yours. Once those leads are generated, you can use some of these tips below to take them further!

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