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For many local businesses, online marketing is only part of the game. And, if you don’t have an online store, then it might seem like marketing on the web is an afterthought – something that has no relation to your sales and foot traffic.

But think again… Your social media accounts ( like Facebook) should be helping you to get more foot traffic in your store or office – and if they’re not, here are some things that can help.

Use Social Media to Incentivize Your Customers

Social Media
It can be difficult for your existing customers to refer their friends and family members to your business unless there’s something in it for them. And, the people they talk to will be more likely to check out your business if they’ll get something too.

The solution? Offer a two-way deal where both your existing customer and the person they refer get something in return. An example might be a 15% off coupon or a free item. That way, your existing customers will feel that they’re offering their friends something valuable – and vice versa!

Partner With Other Local Businesses

One of the best ways to connect with new customers in your area is to partner with other local businesses – particularly those whose audiences overlap with your own.

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For example, if you own a clothing store, you might partner with a local shoe store or jewelry store. Or, if you own a nursery or floral shop, you could partner with a wedding boutique or bakery. From there, you have options, including:

– Running a social media contest where you and your partner(s) post content and run ads to promote the contest. (Each contest sponsor should contribute part of the prize.)
– Offering special promotions and package deals for people who are willing to patronize both businesses.
– Cross-posting content that’s relevant to both audiences.

Share Images of Your Customers

Social media marketing is an ideal way to forge personal connections with your customers and get to know them. One way to do that is to get in the habit of taking photographs (with permission, of course) of your customers while they’re shopping. If you get their okay, you can then share them (and tag your customers) on social media.

What this tactic does is show people how much fun they can have shopped at your store or patronizing your business. And, when you tag customers, you’ll also be
putting your content in front of their friends! That’s a win-win.

Run Targeted Local Ads

While there are lots of ways to leverage organic social media marketing to get more foot traffic in your business, the fact is that paid advertising is still the best option if you want to make sure your content is seen bu local people – the ones who are most likely to buy from you.

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The good news is that social media advertising makes targeting easy. You should choose an audience that is specific to your geographic area. By narrowing it down further – with demographic information and interests – you can minimize your cost and maximize your reach.

Foot traffic doesn’t materialize out of anywhere. But careful leverage of your social media following can help you encourage your existing customers to make additional purchases from you – and incentivize their friends and other new customers to buy from you, too.

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