Andrew Langridge talks about how and why you should be engaging with your local audience

The rise of ecommerce, combined with the steady decline of the high street, means that local advertising has taken a back seat in recent years. However, there is still a place for this type of advertising – especially for SMEs looking to survive in the increasingly competitive print, embroidery and garment branding industry.

Local advertising can be both traditional and modern. Traditional advertising focuses on elements such as radio adverts, advertorials for magazines, directories, direct mail and brochures. This may be seen as ‘old-fashioned’ by some but, when it is done right, it represents a highly effective and eye- catching way of attracting new customers to your business.

The more modern approach to undertaking local advertising involves focusing on online directories (for example, Yell) plus paid online and social media advertising such as Google Ads and Facebook Ads. These platforms allow you to target users based on their behaviours and, most importantly in this case, their geographic location. Focusing on a local strategy and gradually building up to a larger audience offers great advantages:

It’s cost effective Focusing on a specific customer base allows you to focus your efforts and reach relevant customers, thereby increasing your ROI. 

Increased referrals Engaging with local customers and communities will increase your business’s presence in an area. This represents the most low-cost, but effective, form of local advertising.

Local searches Focusing on your local area and using directories for your business will help potential customers to find you when they search by location.

It’s easier to manage Working on a smaller scale will give your business the confidence to get stuck into meaningful marketing activities.

A tailored approach Engaging with local customers over different mediums means you can develop a tailored message for each platform. It also gives you the opportunity to test what works and what doesn’t before launching your idea on a bigger scale.

Andrew Langridge is from ETrader, one of the industry’s leading suppliers of websites to garment decorators across the UK.