If your customers are based locally, then it makes sense to ensure your business is being promoted in the local area. You could of course pay for a local radio or newspaper advertisement but as we all know, unpaid content has a far greater impact, so here are our top tips on how to gain PR in your local area.
- Involve yourself in your local community – we mentioned community engagement in our previous post about the different types of PR and it really is an important and easy way to promote your business in your local area. Sponsoring local sports teams, donating to school raffles or booking a stall at your village fete are all ways to present yourself (and your business) to local residents. Be sure to inform local press of your actions, they may even send a reporter out if the story is newsworthy!
- Network – attending local networking events such as business breakfasts, topical conferences and masterminds are a great way to grow your business locally. Not only could you gain local customers and PR from the events, you could also meet beneficial business contacts, gain inspiration from other business owners and increase your confidence. There are many networking opportunities available, both free and paid, we suggest checking social media for dates, particularly linkedin and business groups on facebook.
- Research your local media – it is a good idea to know the names of any local newspapers, magazines and radio stations that you think would be interested in publishing your press releases. It would also be beneficial to learn who their readers/listeners are and what their content looks/sounds like; to be sure that your business would fit in with their publication. Introduce yourself and your business to the appropriate media, you could even offer a local expert opinion on topical issues! Once you have a list of suitable local media, your press releases can be sent out to your list without delay.
- Team up locally – finding another successful business to join forces with can be a huge boost to your business, especially if you are able to work with a company that is already established in your local area. You could run a joint competition, host an event together or simply contribute to their latest customer newsletter. It would be best if you could find a complimentary business to work with, for instance if you are a coffee roaster you may wish to work with a nearby tea blender or local dairy. Teaming up locally will enable you to promote your business to their existing customers and supporters, who are already spending locally in your industry.