Gusto VS Zenefits Comparison: Which Is Better?

The post Gusto VS Zenefits Comparison: Which Is Better? appeared first on Merchant Maverick.

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22+ Tax Preparation Service Marketing Ideas To Get More Clients

Tax Preparation Service Marketing Ideas To Get More Clients

Most tax preparation services & tax professionals would agree that there’s nothing like finding a new client. New clients not only bring in immediate revenue, but also lifetime value since they are likely to return year after year. And in an industry built on trust, new clients also represent potential word of mouth referrals.

But it’s hard to find a good client if you don’t have new inquiries coming in.

Some tax professionals – especially those with a large, national brand – have a reputation and client base that brings in referrals and inquiries with nothing but a visible office.

But for most tax professionals and preparers, you have to go out and market your service to get a quality pool of potential clients.

I’ve consulted on search marketing for several local insurance agents* and many local service professionals. Based on those experiences, here are some tax preparation service ideas that you can use to bring in more clients.

*I’ve found that some local insurance agents are highly constrained by their national company franchise agreements. Tax professionals are often in a similar setup with the large national franchise brands. These constraints come with major marketing advantages, but also force you to be creative with your supplemental digital marketing. Some of these tactics might be unavailable for your service, but some just need a bit of tweaking.

Create City-Specific Website Pages

For many clients, regions are too big and neighborhoods are too small for the right tax professional, but they do want a local service in their own city.

Local Tax Preparer

That may sound obvious, but most professional firms that I’ve worked with still don’t focus their marketing on individual cities within a region. It’s a lot of work. It’s tedious. But it can still be worthwhile.

Make sure that every city page is actually about that city and includes all your services. Make your page structure “scalable” so that you can easily expand your service area as needed.

Create Niche Service Pages

Lots of clients have specific services and/or expertise that they want.

This is particularly true in an industry like tax preparation. For basic tax prep, there’s Turbo Tax and the 1040EZ form at the library. Lean into hyper-specific services and expertise.

Instead of listing your services & expertise in a giant list, make detailed pages about each expertise. Try to rank for searches like “tax [service]”.

You can use Google Suggest for ideas. Go to Google and type in “tax for” and hit space, but not enter. You’ll see some suggestions.

Tax Preparer Ideas

You can do this with the entire alphabet and as many modifiers as you can think of.

Tax Preparation Service Niches

Create pages that match those search queries to show up when people search.

If you want to take this to the next level, you can use a tool like SEMrush’s Keyword Explorer to provide phrase match search terms in bulk.

Just type in a broad term and see what it’s comes up with.

Create Local Guide Pages

Create resource guides for people moving to or living in your city. Create lots of them.

Local Tax Considerations

Use Google Autosuggest to understand what people are searching for in your city.

Local Atlanta City Tax

Find niche tax questions, which vary State by State and jurisdiction by jurisdiction.

Make a local version for popular tax questions. You can also search for ideas outside of Google. Check out my guide to researching content here.

Develop Your Local Citations & Reviews

You should already have a Google My Business profile so that you can show up in Google Maps.*

*In fact, if you are a local professional who can’t run your own website, your Google My Business profile will be your primary search marketing tool.

But you can take it to the next level to show up even more prominently.

First, you can build your Google My Business profile with photos, posts, and full listing details.

Second, go to every local business listing site and make sure that your Business Name, Address, and Phone Number match exactly. Whether it’s on the Yellow Pages, Yelp, or elsewhere – everything must match. These are called your “local citations” and Google uses them to confirm the relevance of local business.

You can use SEMrush’s Local Listing Management Tool to audit all these listings quickly.

Third, create a local review strategy. Having diverse, unique, and regular reviews on your Google My Business page is the number one way to get more views (aka calls & inquiries) from Google Maps. There are many ways to get reviews, but you can use follow-ups emails, retargeting on social media, and many other methods.

Getting creative with reviews is how you’ll leapfrog other local competing tax professionals in search.

Fourth, you need to make sure your categorization is comprehensive and complete. Many listings offer varying and multiple business categories. If you are a tax professional with multiple services, makes sure you are listed in every database.

Steal Ideas from Large Local Competitors / Businesses

I’m not a fan of brainstorming. I think that it’s more effective to build off ideas that have already worked.

No matter your size, you can always look to larger competitors or larger businesses for inspiration.

With tax preparation marketing, make a list of local businesses that you *think* are being creative – including companies in different industries.

Like local listings and keywords, I then use a marketing tool like SEMrush to spy on those competitors. Type in the URL of a competitor below to see an example.

Here’s what you’ll see.

It looks like a lot. But drill down and categorize each link. You’ll quickly get a sense of what they are doing. You’ll see where they are posting on social media. You’ll see which media outlets have accepted press releases and what types of digital marketing they’re doing.

The trick here is *not* to copy cat them. Instead, take the general idea of what your competitors have done and make it your own – or, make it better.

Work with Local Publications & Blogs

Every city, no matter how small, has an interest in themselves. In Atlanta, where I live, we have a Curbed blog in addition to the AJC Blogs, Atlanta Business Chronicle, and dozens of smaller neighborhood newspapers and real estate blogs.

Find those and become a regular fixture. All local publications & blogs act on tips & press releases. Very few have a “boots on the ground” journalists. If you can be the place to provide inside information, free images, and consistent write-ups, you’ll earn attention and links.

In the tax arena, any statistics, trends, or data that you have can easily translate to free PR, which can then translate into links to your website or service profile.

That extra attention and those links will help every other idea on this list. Google loves links. Social media users find URLs via links.

Your city pages, service pages, and everything else on your website will benefit from more inbound links.

Use Hyper-Local Facebook Ads

A local business has one massive advantage against national brands trying to operate locally – you live in your city and understand it.

Facebook allows for hyper-local advertising. You can run ads that show within a radius of only a few miles. It’s tedious to set up, but it’s relevant and effective.

Learn how to create hyper-local targeting for demographics and geography to find lots of interested clients. Lean in to local tax problems.

For example, if you live in State affected by the SALT cap – talk about that. If you serve one of the cities with a wage / income tax – talk about that.

Whether it’s 529s, childcare, energy credits, find out what makes *your* area different and talk to the exact people that those tax considerations affect.

You can run small, targeted campaigns that show multiple places at once.

Use Hyper-Local Google Search Ads

Google Search ads are famously effective and famously expensive. The best client is someone who searches for “tax preparation in [city]”.

But that search click will be very costly.

In fact, some of the most expensive searches on Google are for tax queries.

You’ll be competing with huge, publicly traded national brands with near infinite budgets and an army of advertising professionals.

But like Facebook, you have an critical local advantage with Google Quality Score. Google will show ads higher if they are more relevant even if they don’t have the high bid.

Like Facebook, it’s tedious to set up, but if you can set up a hyper-local campaign, you’ll be able to get Google Search traffic that large competitors can’t bid on.

The key is to run landing pages that perfectly match your ads, and run ads that perfectly match specific, local keywords.

If you offer tailored or niche tax products, this strategy can be particularly useful.

Use Hyper-Local Google Display Ads

Google’s Display Network also offers opportunities for local advertisers who are willing to put in the work.

Google serves banner & text ads on some of the best ad locations on the Internet. Many placements are expensive for bulk ad buys.

But again, Google would rather serve a relevant ad with a low bid than an irrelevant ad with a high bid. That’s your opportunity to set up a hyper-local campaign focused on specific demographics in a specific area.

Even if you have a small market, you can always use Google’s Retargeting setting to solicit more reviews & referrals.

List on Locally-Popular Tax Websites

Tax & financial websites are a dime a dozen. They will send traffic to your listing. But they are expensive and require a lot of legwork.

The key is to find a few key financial websites that are popular in your area – and list on those.

Tax Listings Atlanta

You can use Google Trends, client interviews, SEMrush, or simply looking at the Google Search Results to see who is more popular for your city / neighborhood.

List on NextDoor & Local Forums

NextDoor is one of many local social media websites & forums. They are hard to find and hard to join, representing an opportunity for any local, enterprising tax professional.

These networks are interesting because they are specifically local and extremely relevant for professional services.

They also have an accessible, affordable, and useful local advertising service.

Automate Social Media Monitoring

Like Reddit, people often start their professional search on local social media with open-ended, specific questions.

It’s impossible to spend all your time on social media. But it is possible to automate both posting and listening on social media.

Take advantage of Twitter alerts, IFTTT, Zapier, and other tools to automate your social media presence and find great leads.

Contribute to Local Wikipedia

Wikipedia is a known resource for everyone. It relies on contributors – and authoritative contributors for local cities are often sparse.

Look for opportunities to use your website as an authoritative source for Wikipedia. A tax agency is well-positioned to provide historical documentation, legal background, and more for Wikipedia entries.

Historical Tax Documents in Wikipedia

Don’t be over-promotional or spammy, but you can look to increase your presence there for the links and the potential exposure.

After all, if people are using Wikipedia for research, it’s a great place to have your website & brand.

Identify & Market Popular Client Sources

Take previous & existing clients and try to understand where those clients came from and how they found you.

See if there is a way to build off that success. It sounds cliche and obvious, but the key is in the execution. I’ve worked with plenty of professional firms who knew where they got clients from, but never thought about increasing that channel.

Cross-Promote Local Professionals

Local financial professionals usually have an incredible offline network, but have a poor online network. That’s the same with real estate agents, therapists, and other professional services. If you are investing in your online marketing efforts, try to develop a relationship to cross-promote as many local professionals as possible.

Cross-Promote Local Businesses

As an tax professional, you have the opportunity to stand at the nexus of lots of businesses & people. The key to most tax professionals is referrals. Try promoting other businesses in an effort to simply be top of mind for when the need for a tax professional happens.

Remember that even a link to your website from their website will dramatically help your other online efforts.

Coordinate Offline & Online Marketing

Take what your other marketing channels and drive them to specific landing pages with tracking. Create a marketing funnel rather than direct call to action across your on and offline marketing.

Use Events To Get Social Media Attention

Events like pro bono, Q&A sessions, seminars, college recruiting events are staples for many tax professionals. But events have a bonus effect online.

You can list them on multiple platforms to get extra exposure. Facebook is the best place for this tactic, but it also works on Google, Instagram, and event apps like Meet and Four Square.

Use Video Tours To Hack Social Media

Like events, most social media gives preference to video in their feeds. Take interesting video tours of tax issues with behind the scenes explainers.

Video can be hard, but that means you will get a competitive advantage if you can pull it off. Create “evergreen” videos about topics that will last.

Post the file natively to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Pay a small budget to boost it. And look for opportunities to embed it on your website.

Use Digital Referral Fees for Word of Mouth

Referral fees are also a staple of professionals’ marketing. But they don’t get the same reach as digital referral codes.

Whether you use a simple bit.ly link, manually hand out custom codes (i.e., client numbers), or use a software service – digital referral codes can help you move limited physical word of mouth to unlimited digital word of mouth.

Find & Sponsor Local Charities

Sponsoring local charities provides a few marketing benefits.

First, you can likely get a link to your website, which will help your other efforts. For many professionals, it’s the cheapest, simplest, and best way to promote your local listing & get links. You get long-term value for a short-term fee.

Second, you can tap into a well-networked organization with lots of word of mouth potential.

Third, you can tap into neighborhood goodwill to help with soliciting reviews to help with your Google My Business efforts.

Next Steps

There are a lot of marketing ideas out there for tax professionals and tax preparation services. You don’t have to do all of them. You just have to do one or two well.

Find the one that fits your interests & resources and give it a try. Learn based on your initial experience and improve.

This post originally appeared at 22+ Tax Preparation Service Marketing Ideas To Get More Clients via ShivarWeb

“”

Top 5 Reasons Why Small Businesses Were Denied Government Funding During The COVID Crisis

The post Top 5 Reasons Why Small Businesses Were Denied Government Funding During The COVID Crisis appeared first on Merchant Maverick.

“”

22+ Insurance Agency Marketing Ideas To Get More Clients

Insurance Agency Marketing Ideas To Get More Clients

Most insurance agencies & brokers would agree that there’s nothing like finding a new client. New clients not only bring in revenue, but also lifetime value and new referrals. But it’s hard to find a good client if you don’t have new inquiries coming in.

Some insurance agencies & brokers – especially those with a large, national brand – have a reputation and client base that brings in referrals and inquiries with nothing but a phone number.

But for most agents and brokers, you have to go out and market your agency or brokerage to get a quality pool of potential clients.

I’ve consulted on search marketing for several local insurance agents* and many local service professionals. Based on those experiences, here are some insurance agency marketing ideas that you can use to bring in more clients.

*I’ve found that some local insurance agents are highly constrained by their national company franchise agreements. These constraints come with major marketing advantages, but also force you to be creative with your supplemental digital marketing. Some of these tactics might be unavailable for you, but some just need a bit of tweaking.

Create City-Specific Website Pages

For many clients, regions are too big and neighborhoods are too small for the right insurance agent, but they do want a local agent or broker in their own city.

That may sound obvious, but most professional firms that I’ve worked with still don’t focus their marketing on individual cities within a region. It’s a lot of work. It’s tedious. But it can still be worthwhile.

Make sure that every city page is actually about that city and includes all your services. Make your page structure “scalable” so that you can easily expand your service area as needed.

Create Niche Service Pages

Lots of clients have specific services and/or expertise that they want. Instead of listing your services & expertise in a giant list, make detailed pages about each expertise. Try to rank for searches like “[service] insurance”.

You can use Google Suggest for ideas. Go to Google and type in “[city] insurance that” and hit space, but not enter. You’ll see some suggestions.

You can do this with the entire alphabet and as many modifiers as you can think of.

Create pages that match those search queries to show up when people search.

If you want to take this to the next level, you can use a tool like SEMrush’s Keyword Explorer to provide phrase match search terms in bulk.

Just type in a broad term and see what it’s comes up with.

Create Local Guide Pages

Create resource guides for people moving to or living in your city. Create lots of them.

Use Google Autosuggest to understand what people are searching for in your city.

Find niche insurance questions, which vary State by State and jurisdiction by jurisdiction.

Make a local version for popular insurance questions.

Develop Your Local Citations & Reviews

You should already have a Google My Business profile so that you can show up in Google Maps.*

*In fact, if you are a local agent who can’t run your own website, your Google My Business profile will be your primary search marketing tool.

But you can take it to the next level to show up even more prominently.

First, you can build your Google My Business profile with photos, posts, and full listing details.

Second, go to every local business listing site and make sure that your Business Name, Address, and Phone Number match exactly. Whether it’s on the Yellow Pages, Yelp, or elsewhere – everything must match. These are called your “local citations” and Google uses them to confirm the relevance of local business.

You can use SEMrush’s Local Listing Management Tool to audit all these listings quickly.

Third, create a local review strategy. Having diverse, unique, and regular reviews on your Google My Business page is the number one way to get more views (aka calls & inquiries) from Google Maps. There are many ways to get reviews, but you can use follow-ups emails, retargeting on social media, and many other methods.

Getting creative with reviews is how you’ll leapfrog other local competing insurance agents in search.

Fourth, you need to make sure your categorization is comprehensive and complete. Many listings offer varying and multiple business categories. If you are an insurance broker or agency with multiple services, makes sure you are listed in every database.

Steal Ideas from Large Local Competitors / Businesses

I’m not a fan of brainstorming. I think that it’s more effective to build off ideas that have already worked.

No matter your size, you can always look to larger competitors or larger businesses for inspiration.

With insurance marketing, make a list of local businesses that you *think* are being creative – including companies in different industries.

Like local listings and keywords, I then use a marketing tool like SEMrush to spy on those competitors. Type in the URL of a competitor below to see an example.

Here’s what you’ll see.

It looks like a lot. But drill down and categorize each link. You’ll quickly get a sense of what they are doing. You’ll see where they are posting on social media. You’ll see which media outlets have accepted press releases and what types of digital marketing they’re doing.

The trick here is *not* to copy cat them. Instead, take the general idea of what your competitors have done and make it your own – or, make it better.

Work with Local Publications & Blogs

Every city, no matter how small, has an interest in themselves. In Atlanta, where I live, we have a Curbed blog in addition to the AJC Blogs, Atlanta Business Chronicle, and dozens of smaller neighborhood newspapers and real estate blogs.

Find those and become a regular fixture. All local publications & blogs act on tips & press releases. Very few have a “boots on the ground” journalists. If you can be the place to provide inside information, free images, and consistent write-ups, you’ll earn attention and links.

In the insurance arena, any statistics, trends, or data that you have can easily translate to free PR, which can then translate into links to your website or agent profile.

That extra attention and those links will help every other idea on this list. Google loves links. Social media users find URLs via links.

Your city pages, service pages, and everything else on your website will benefit from more inbound links.

Use Hyper-Local Facebook Ads

A local business has one massive advantage against national brands trying to operate locally – you live in your city and understand it.

Facebook allows for hyper-local advertising. You can run ads that show within a radius of only a few miles. It’s tedious to set up, but it’s relevant and effective.

Learn how to create hyper-local targeting for demographics and geography to find lots of interested clients.

You can run small, targeted campaigns that show multiple places at once.

Use Hyper-Local Google Search Ads

Google Search ads are famously effective and famously expensive. The best client is someone who searches for “car insurance in [city]”.

But that search click will be very costly.

In fact, some of the most expensive searches on Google are for legal terms.

But like Facebook, you have an critical local advantage with Google Quality Score. Google will show ads higher if they are more relevant even if they don’t have the high bid.

Like Facebook, it’s tedious to set up, but if you can set up a hyper-local campaign, you’ll be able to get Google Search traffic that large competitors can’t bid on.

The key is to run landing pages that perfectly match your ads, and run ads that perfectly match specific, local keywords.

If you offer tailored or niche insurance products, this strategy can be particularly useful.

Use Hyper-Local Google Display Ads

Google’s Display Network also offers opportunities for local advertisers who are willing to put in the work.

Google serves banner & text ads on some of the best ad locations on the Internet. Many placements are expensive for bulk ad buys.

But again, Google would rather serve a relevant ad with a low bid than an irrelevant ad with a high bid. That’s your opportunity to set up a hyper-local campaign focused on specific demographics in a specific area.

Even if you have a small market, you can always use Google’s Retargeting setting to solicit more reviews & referrals.

List on Locally-Popular Insurance Websites

Insurance listing websites are a dime a dozen. They will send traffic to your listing. But they are expensive and require a lot of legwork.

The key is to find a few key insurance websites that are popular in your area – and list on those.

You can use Google Trends, client interviews, SEMrush, or simply looking at the Google Search Results to see who is more popular for your city / neighborhood.

List on NextDoor & Local Forums

NextDoor is one of many local social media websites & forums. They are hard to find and hard to join, representing an opportunity for any local, enterprising broker or agent.

These networks are interesting because they are specifically local and extremely relevant for professional services.

They also have an accessible, affordable, and useful local advertising service.

Automate Social Media Monitoring

Like Reddit, people often start their insurance search on local social media with open-ended, specific questions.

It’s impossible to spend all your time on social media. But it is possible to automate both posting and listening on social media.

Take advantage of Twitter alerts, IFTTT, Zapier, and other tools to automate your social media presence and find great leads.

Contribute to Local Wikipedia

Wikipedia is a known resource for everyone. It relies on contributors – and authoritative contributors for local cities are often sparse.

Look for opportunities to use your website as an authoritative source for Wikipedia. An insurance agency is well-positioned to provide historical documentation, legal background, and more for Wikipedia entries.

Don’t be over-promotional or spammy, but you can look to increase your presence there for the links and the potential exposure.

After all, if people are using Wikipedia for research, it’s a great place to have your website & brand.

Identify & Market Popular Client Sources

Take previous & existing clients and try to understand where those clients came from and how they found you.

See if there is a way to build off that success. It sounds cliche and obvious, but the key is in the execution. I’ve worked with plenty of professional firms who knew where they got clients from, but never thought about increasing that channel.

Cross-Promote Local Professionals

Local real estate agents usually have an incredible offline network, but have a poor online network. That’s the same with accountants, therapists, and other professional services. If you are investing in your online marketing efforts, try to develop a relationship to cross-promote as many local professionals as possible.

Cross-Promote Local Businesses

As an insurance agent, you have the opportunity to stand at the nexus of lots of businesses & people. The key to most law firms is referrals. Try promoting other businesses in an effort to simply be top of mind for when the need for an insurance agent / broker happens.

Remember that even a link to your website from their website will dramatically help your other online efforts.

Coordinate Offline & Online Marketing

Take what your other marketing channels and drive them to specific landing pages with tracking. Create a marketing funnel rather than direct call to action across your on and offline marketing.

Use Events To Get Social Media Attention

Events like pro bono, Q&A sessions, seminars, college recruiting events are staples for many law firms. But events have a bonus effect online.

You can list them on multiple platforms to get extra exposure. Facebook is the best place for this tactic, but it also works on Google, Instagram, and event apps like Meet and Four Square.

Use Video Tours To Hack Social Media

Like events, most social media gives preference to video in their feeds. Take interesting video tours of insurance issues with behind the scenes explainers.

Video can be hard, but that means you will get a competitive advantage if you can pull it off. Create “evergreen” videos about topics that will last.

Post the file natively to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Pay a small budget to boost it. And look for opportunities to embed it on your website.

Use Digital Referral Fees for Word of Mouth

Referral fees are also a staple of insurance marketing. But they don’t get the same reach as digital referral codes.

Whether you use a simple bit.ly link, manually hand out custom codes (i.e., client numbers), or use a software service – digital referral codes can help you move limited physical word of mouth to unlimited digital word of mouth.

Find & Sponsor Local Charities

Sponsoring local charities provides a few marketing benefits.

First, you can likely get a link to your website, which will help your other efforts. For many agents, it’s the cheapest, simplest, and best way to promote your local listing & get links. You get long-term value for a short-term fee.

Second, you can tap into a well-networked organization with lots of word of mouth potential.

Third, you can tap into neighborhood goodwill to help with soliciting reviews to help with your Google My Business efforts.

Next Steps

There are a lot of marketing ideas out there for insurance agencies & brokers. You don’t have to do all of them. You just have to do one or two well.

Find the one that fits your interests & resources and give it a try. Learn based on your initial experience and improve.

This post originally appeared at 22+ Insurance Agency Marketing Ideas To Get More Clients via ShivarWeb

“”

Gusto VS ADP: Which Payroll Software Is Better?

The post Gusto VS ADP: Which Payroll Software Is Better? appeared first on Merchant Maverick.

“”

How To Maintain A Healthy Cash Flow For Your Business

The post How To Maintain A Healthy Cash Flow For Your Business appeared first on Merchant Maverick.

“”

22+ Law Firm Marketing & Advertising Ideas To Find More Clients

Law Firm Marketing & Advertising Ideas To Find More Clients

Most law firms would agree that there’s nothing like finding a new client. New clients not only bring in revenue, but also lifetime value and new referrals. But it’s hard to find a good client if you don’t have new inquiries coming in.

Some law firms have a reputation and client base that brings in referrals and inquiries with nothing but a phone number. But for most lawyers, you have to go out and market your firm to get a quality pool of potential clients.

I’ve consulted on search marketing for several large, local professional firms. Based on those experiences, here are some lawyer & law firm marketing ideas that you can use to bring in more clients.

Create City-Specific Website Pages

For many clients, regions are too big and neighborhoods are too small for the right law firm, but they do want a local lawyer in their own city.

Lawyer Marketing

That may sound obvious, but most professional firms that I’ve worked with still don’t focus their marketing on individual cities within a region. It’s a lot of work. It’s tedious. But it can still be worthwhile.

Make sure that every city page is actually about that city and includes all your services. Make your page structure “scalable” so that you can easily expand your service area as needed.

Create Niche Service Pages

Lots of clients have specific services and/or expertise that they want. Instead of listing your services & expertise in a giant list, make detailed pages about each expertise. Try to rank for searches like “[service] lawyer”.

You can use Google Suggest for ideas. Go to Google and type in “[city] lawyer that” and hit space, but not enter. You’ll see some suggestions.

Lawyer Services
Lawyer Expertise

You can do this with the entire alphabet and as many modifiers as you can think of.

Atlanta Legal Expertise

Create pages that match those search queries to show up when people search.

If you want to take this to the next level, you can use a tool like SEMrush’s Keyword Explorer to provide phrase match search terms in bulk.

Create Local Guide Pages

Create resource guides for people moving to your city. Create lots of them.

Georgia Laws

Use Google Autosuggest to understand what people are searching for in your city.

Municipal Laws

Find a niche in legal questions, which vary State by State and jurisdiction by jurisdiction.

Hiring a Lawyer

Make a local version for popular legal questions.

Develop Your Local Citations & Reviews

You should already have a Google My Business profile so that you can show up in Google Maps.

But you can take it to the next level to show up even more prominently.

First, you can build your Google My Business profile with photos, posts, and full listing details.

Second, go to every local business listing site and make sure that your Business Name, Address, and Phone Number match exactly. Whether it’s on the Yellow Pages, Yelp, or elsewhere – everything must match. These are called your “local citations” and Google uses them to confirm the relevance of local business.

You can use SEMrush’s Local Listing Management Tool to audit all these listings quickly.

Third, create a local review strategy. Having diverse, unique, and regular reviews on your Google My Business page is the number one way to get more views (aka calls & inquiries) from Google Maps. There are many ways to get reviews, but you can use follow-ups emails, retargeting, and many other methods.

Fourth, you need to make sure your categorization is comprehensive and complete. Many listings offer varying and multiple business categories. If you are a law firm with multiple services, makes sure you are listed in every database.

Steal Ideas from Large Local Competitors / Businesses

I’m not a fan of brainstorming. I think that it’s more effective to build off ideas that have already worked.

No matter your size, you can always look to larger competitors or larger businesses for inspiration.

With law firm marketing, make a list of local businesses that you *think* are being creative – including companies in different industries.

Like local listings and keywords, I then use a marketing tool like SEMrush to spy on those competitors. Type in the URL of a competitor below to see an example.

Here’s what you’ll see.

It looks like a lot. But drill down and categorize each link. You’ll quickly get a sense of what they are doing. You’ll see where they are posting on social media. You’ll see which media outlets have accepted press releases and what types of digital marketing they’re doing.

The trick here is *not* to copy cat them. Instead, take the general idea of what your competitors have done and make it your own – or, make it better.

Work with Local Publications & Blogs

Every city, no matter how small, has an interest in themselves. In Atlanta, where I live, we have a Curbed blog in addition to the AJC Blogs, Atlanta Business Chronicle, and dozens of smaller neighborhood newspapers and real estate blogs.

Find those and become a regular fixture. All local publications & blogs act on tips & press releases. Very few have a “boots on the ground” journalists. If you can be the place to provide inside information, free images, and consistent write-ups, you’ll earn attention and links.

In the legal arena, any statistics, trends, or data that you have can easily translate to free PR, which can then translate into links to your website.

That extra attention and those links will help every other idea on this list. Google loves links. Social media users find URLs via links.

Your city pages, service pages, and everything else on your website will benefit from more inbound links.

Use Hyper-Local Facebook Ads

A local business has one massive advantage against national brands trying to operate locally – you live in your city and understand it.

Facebook allows for hyper-local advertising. You can run ads that show within a radius of only a few miles. It’s tedious to set up, but it’s relevant and effective.

Learn how to create hyper-local targeting for demographics and geography to find lots of interested clients.

You can run small, targeted campaigns that show multiple places at once.

Use Hyper-Local Google Search Ads

Google Search ads are famously effective and famously expensive. The best client is someone who searches for “lawyer in [city]”.

But that search click will be very costly.

In fact, some of the most expensive searches on Google are for legal terms.

But like Facebook, you have an critical local advantage with Google Quality Score. Google will show ads higher if they are more relevant even if they don’t have the high bid.

Like Facebook, it’s tedious to set up, but if you can set up a hyper-local campaign, you’ll be able to get Google Search traffic that large competitors can’t bid on.

The key is to run landing pages that perfectly match your ads, and run ads that perfectly match specific, local keywords.

Use Hyper-Local Google Display Ads

Google’s Display Network also offers opportunities for local advertisers who are willing to put in the work.

Google serves banner & text ads on some of the best ad locations on the Internet. Many placements are expensive for bulk ad buys.

But again, Google would rather serve a relevant ad with a low bid than an irrelevant ad with a high bid. That’s your opportunity to set up a hyper-local campaign focused on specific demographics in a specific area.

Even if you have a small market, you can always use Google’s Retargeting setting to solicit more reviews & referrals.

List on Locally-Popular Legal Websites

Lawyer listing websites are a dime a dozen. They will send traffic to your listing. But they are expensive and require a lot of legwork.

The key is to find a few key lawyer websites that are popular in your area – and list on those.

You can use Google Trends, client interviews, SEMrush, or simply looking at the Google Search Results to see who is more popular for your city / neighborhood.

Lawyer SERPs

List on NextDoor & Local Forums

NextDoor is one of many local social media websites & forums. They are hard to find and hard to join, representing an opportunity for any local, enterprising attorney.

These networks are interesting because they are specifically local and extremely relevant for professional services.

They also have an accessible, affordable, and useful local advertising service.

Advertise / Post on Local Subreddits

Reddit is an attractive website for many industries. But local subreddits are especially interesting for attorneys and law firms for a couple of reasons.

First, they are hubs for local discussion & recommendations.

Second, they are the first place for people to ask open-ended specific, local questions.

Reddit Lawyer Recommendations

Now, Reddit is decidedly non-commercial with lots of rules. You should get to know them before posting or commenting as a commercial entity.

However, you should explore their sidebar wiki for research.

You should get in touch with the moderators to listen to their rules about business posting. And you should look at running ads or giveaways there.

Automate Social Media Monitoring

Like Reddit, people often start their lawyer search on local social media with open-ended, specific questions.

It’s impossible to spend all your time on social media. But it is possible to automate both posting and listening on social media.

Take advantage of Twitter alerts, IFTTT, Zapier, and other tools to automate your social media presence and find great leads.

Contribute to Local Wikipedia

Wikipedia is a known resource for everyone. It relies on contributors – and authoritative contributors for local cities are often sparse.

Look for opportunities to use your website as an authoritative source for Wikipedia. A law firm is well-positioned to provide historical documentation, legal background, and more for Wikipedia entries.

Don’t be over-promotional or spammy, but you can look to increase your presence there for the links and the potential exposure.

After all, if people are using Wikipedia for legal research, it’s a great place to have your website & brand.

Identify & Market Popular Client Sources

Take previous & existing clients and try to understand where those clients came from and how they found you.

See if there is a way to build off that success. It sounds cliche and obvious, but the key is in the execution. I’ve worked with plenty of professional firms who knew where they got clients from, but never thought about increasing that channel.

Cross-Promote Local Professionals

Local real estate agents usually have an incredible offline network, but have a poor online network. That’s the same with accountants, therapists, and other professional services. If you are investing in your online marketing efforts, try to develop a relationship to cross-promote as many local professionals as possible.

Cross-Promote Local Businesses

As a lawyer, you have the opportunity to stand at the nexus of lots of businesses & people. The key to most law firms is referrals. Try promoting other businesses in an effort to simply be top of mind for when the need for an attorney happens.

Remember that even a link to your website from their website will dramatically help your other online efforts.

Coordinate Offline & Online Marketing

Take what your other marketing channels and drive them to specific landing pages with tracking. Create a marketing funnel rather than direct call to action across your on and offline marketing.

Use Events To Get Social Media Attention

Events like open houses, pro bono, Q&A sessions, seminars, college recruiting events are staples for many law firms. But events have a bonus effect online.

You can list them on multiple platforms to get extra exposure. Facebook is the best place for this tactic, but it also works on Google, Instagram, and event apps like Meet and Four Square.

Use Video Tours To Hack Social Media

Like events, most social media gives preference to video in their feeds. Take interesting video tours of legal issues with behind the scenes explainers.

Video can be hard, but that means you will get a competitive advantage if you can pull it off. Create “evergreen” videos about topics that will last.

Post the file natively to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Pay a small budget to boost it. And look for opportunities to embed it on your website.

Use Digital Referral Fees for Word of Mouth

Referral fees are also a staple of attorney marketing. But they don’t get the same reach as digital referral codes.

Whether you use a simple bit.ly link, manually hand out custom codes (i.e., client numbers), or use a software service – digital referral codes can help you move limited physical word of mouth to unlimited digital word of mouth.

Find & Sponsor Local Charities

Sponsoring local charities provides a few marketing benefits.

First, you can likely get a link to your website, which will help your other efforts.

Second, you can tap into a well-networked organization with lots of word of mouth potential.

Third, you can tap into neighborhood goodwill to help with soliciting reviews to help with your Google My Business efforts.

Next Steps

There are a lot of marketing ideas out there for attorneys and law firms. You don’t have to do all of them. You just have to do one or two well.

Find the one that fits your interests & resources and give it a try. Learn based on your initial experience and improve.

This post originally appeared at 22+ Law Firm Marketing & Advertising Ideas To Find More Clients via ShivarWeb

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The Step-By-Step Guide To Building A Website With Weebly

The post The Step-By-Step Guide To Building A Website With Weebly appeared first on Merchant Maverick.

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22+ Fitness Center & Gym Marketing Ideas To Find More Customers

This post originally appeared at 22+ Fitness Center & Gym Marketing Ideas To Find More Customers via ShivarWeb

Fitness Center & Gym Marketing Ideas To Find More Customers

Most fitness center & gym owners would agree that there’s nothing like finding a good customer. But it’s hard to find a good customer if you don’t have calls & emails coming in.

Some gyms have a location that brings in applications with nothing but a sign in the window. But for most fitness center managers, you have to go out and market your gym to get a quality pool of potential customers.

I’ve consulted on search marketing for several large, locally based business. Based on those experiences, here are some fitness center & gym marketing ideas that you can use to bring in more customers.

Create Neighborhood-Specific Website Pages

For many gym customers, city searches are too big, street searches are too small, and ZIP code searches are not relevant. Neighborhood searches are just right.

Google Suggest - Neighborhoods for Gyms

That may sound obvious, but most local businesses that I’ve worked with still don’t focus their marketing on neighborhoods. It’s a lot of work. It’s tedious. But it can still be worthwhile.

If you list multiple locations on your website, simply organize them by neighborhood (i.e., make neighborhoods your category).

If you have a single gym location, create a neighborhood & next to your neighborhood pages to try to rank for “gyms in [neighborhood]” searches.

Create Niche Amenity Pages

Lots of gym customers have specific amenities and/or requirements that they want. Instead of listing your amenities in a giant list, make detailed pages about each amenity. Try to rank for searches like “gyms with [amenity]”.

You can use Google Suggest for ideas. Go to Google and type in “[city] gym with” and hit space, but not enter. You’ll see some suggestions.

Google Suggest - Amenities for Gyms

You can do this with the entire alphabet and as many modifiers as you can think of.

Google Suggest - Amenities for Gyms

Create pages that match those search queries to show up when people search.

If you want to take this to the next level, you can use a tool like SEMrush’s Keyword Explorer to provide phrase match search terms in bulk.

Google SERPs

Create Local Data Pages

Create resource guides for people moving or visiting your city. Create lots of them.

Google SERPs

Use Google Autosuggest to understand what people are searching for in your city.

Google SERPs

Develop Your Local Citations & Reviews

You should already have a Google My Business profile so that you can show up in Google Maps.

But you can take it to the next level to show up even more prominently.

First, you can build your Google My Business profile with photos, posts, and full listing details.

Second, go to every local business listing site and make sure that your Business Name, Address, and Phone Number match exactly. Whether it’s on the Yellow Pages, Yelp, or elsewhere – everything must match. These are called your “local citations” and Google uses them to confirm the relevance of local business.

You can use SEMrush’s Local Listing Management Tool to audit all these listings quickly.

Local Listings for Gyms

Third, create a local review strategy. Having diverse, unique, and regular reviews on your Google My Business page is the number one way to get more views (aka lease applications) from Google Maps.

Steal Ideas from Large Local Competitors / Businesses

I’m not a fan of brainstorming. I think that it’s more effective to build off ideas that have already worked.

No matter your size, you can always look to larger competitors or larger businesses for inspiration.

With fitness center & gym marketing, make a list of local businesses that you *think* are being creative – including companies in different industries.

Note – This is where the big guys – Planet Fitness, Orange Theory, LA Fitness, etc are useful. See what they are doing in [large city] and steal their tactics.

Like local listings and keywords, I then use a marketing tool like SEMrush to spy on those competitors. Type in the URL of a competitor below to see an example.

Here’s what you’ll see.

Gym Link Building Ideas

It looks like a lot. But drill down and categorize each link. You’ll quickly get a sense of what they are doing. You’ll see where they are posting on social media. You’ll see which media outlets have accepted press releases and what types of digital marketing they’re doing.

The trick here is *not* to copy cat them. Instead, take the general idea of what your competitors have done and make it your own – or, make it better.

Work with Local Blogs

Every city, no matter how small, has an interest in what’s going on. In Atlanta, where I live, we have Creative Loafing, Porch Press, Atlanta Voice, Atlanta Parent, etc.

Find those and become a regular fixture. All local blogs act on tips & press releases. Very few have a “boots on the ground” journalist. If you can be the place to provide inside information, local trends, free images, and consistent write-ups, you’ll earn attention and links.

Local Magazine with Gym Links

That extra attention and those links will help every other idea on this list. Google loves links. Social media users find URLs via links.

Your neighborhood pages, rental listings, amenity pages, and everything else on your website will benefit from more inbound links.

Use Hyper-Local Facebook Ads

A local business has one massive advantage against national brands trying to operate locally – you live in your city and understand it.

Facebook allows for hyper-local advertising. You can run ads that show within a radius of only a few miles. It’s tedious to set up, but it’s relevant and effective.

Learn how to create hyper-local targeting for demographics and geography to find lots of interested customers.

You can run small, targeted campaigns that show multiple places at once. Be sure to take advantage of Facebook’s Lookalike ads. You can target your *exact* customer (ie, those who like CrossFit, Jillian Michaels, etc) and live in a specific neighborhood.

Be sure to also browse Facebook’s Ad Library to get ideas for solid local gym ads.

Use Hyper-Local Google Search Ads

Google Search ads are famously effective and famously expensive. The best customer is someone who searches for “gyms in [neighborhood]”.

But that search click will be very costly.

But like Facebook, you have an “in” – Google Quality Score. Google will show ads higher if they are more relevant even if they don’t have the high bid.

Like Facebook, it’s tedious to set up, but if you can set up a hyper-local campaign, you’ll be able to get Google Search traffic that large competitors can’t bid on.

Use Hyper-Local Google Display Ads

Google’s Display Network also offers opportunities for local advertisers who are willing to put in the work.

Google serves banner & text ads on some of the best ad locations on the Internet. Many placements are expensive for bulk ad buys.

But again, Google would rather serve a relevant ad with a low bid than an irrelevant ad with a high bid. That’s your opportunity to set up a hyper-local campaign focused on specific demographics in a specific area.

List on Locally-Popular Review Websites

Review websites are a dime a dozen. They will send traffic to your listing. But they are expensive and require a lot of legwork.

The key is to find a few key review websites that are popular in your area – and list on those.

Gym Review Websites

You can use Google Trends, customer interviews, SEMrush, or simply looking at the Google Search Results to see who is more popular for your city / neighborhood.

List on NextDoor & Local Forums

NextDoor is one of many local social media websites & forums. They are hard to find and hard to join, representing an opportunity for any local, enterprising fitness center manager.

These networks are interesting because they are specifically local and extremely relevant for gyms. NextDoor also has a new early adopter ad program.

Advertise / Post on Local Subreddits

Reddit is an attractive website for many industries. But local subreddits are especially interesting for gym owners for a couple of reasons.

First, they are hubs for local discussion & recommendations.

Second, they are the first place for people to plan a move visit to ask specific, local questions.

Now, they are decidedly non-commercial with lots of rules. You should get to know them before posting or commenting as a commercial entity.

However, you should explore their sidebar wiki for research.

You should get in touch with the moderators to listen to their rules about business posting. And you should look at running ads or giveaways there.

Post Listings w/ Photos in Instagram

Think about how you can take workout & equipment photos & repurpose them across different platforms. I don’t think you should simply post listings on every platform, but instead use photos from actual workouts and fitness equipment to create a truly interesting feed on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter.

For example, suppose you have a unique piece of gym equipment. Post a tutorial on how to use it! So much gym equipment is useless to members because they don’t know how to use it. Take that opportunity to educate and help followers envision themselves in your gym space.

Develop a Local Workout Pinterest Board

Pinterest is an incredible resource for people looking to improve their lives. You can get in front of prospects with a locally-focused Pinterest board.

Use local photos, guides, etc from real workouts to provide ideas. Promote local trainers, businesses, etc.

Identify & Market Local Employers

Your customers are all working somewhere. And your prospective customers all will want a gym coming or going from their job.

Identify all the largest employers & sources of potential customers nearby. Create resource pages for those employers (especially if they are large).

Create discounts, bonuses, etc. Get in touch with those employers to see if there is a way to collaborate.

Identify & Market Local Schools & Amenities

Take what you did with local employers and do the same with local amenities and resources.

Create pages that act as resource hubs for neighborhood amenities & schools.

Identify & Market Popular Customer Sources

Take previous & existing customers and try to understand where those customers came from and how they found you.

See if there is a way to build off that success.

Cross-Promote Local Fitness Professionals

Local fitness professionals (trainers, nutritionists, sports instructors, etc) usually have an incredible offline network, but have a poor online network.

If you are investing in your online marketing efforts, try to develop a relationship to cross-promote the professionals.

Cross-Promote Local Businesses

Your customers will spend money nearby. Figure out what other businesses do well when you have 100% occupancy. Offer a way to cross-promote, especially if they have multiple locations or a presence with your target customer.

Remember that even a link to your website from their website will dramatically help your other online efforts.

Use Events To Get Social Media Attention

Events like open house tours, openings, holiday showings, etc are marketing staples for gyms. But events have a bonus effect online.

You can list them on multiple platforms to get extra exposure. Facebook is the best place for this tactic, but it also works on Google, Instagram, and event apps like Meet and Four Square.

Use Video Tours To Hack Social Media

Like events, most social media gives preference to video in their feeds. Take interesting video tours of equipment & workout tutorials.

Post the file natively to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Pay a small budget to boost it. And look for opportunities to embed it on your website.

Use Digital Referral Fees for Word of Mouth

Referral fees are also a staple of gym marketing. But they don’t get the same reach as digital referral codes.

Whether you use a simple bit.ly link, manually hand out custom codes (i.e., access numbers), or use a software service – digital referral codes can help you move limited physical word of mouth to unlimited digital word of mouth.

Find & Sponsor Local Charities

Sponsoring local charities provides a few marketing benefits.

First, you can likely get a link to your website, which will help your other efforts.

Second, you can tap into a well-networked organization with lots of word of mouth potential.

Third, you can tap into neighborhood goodwill to help with soliciting reviews to help with your Google My Business efforts.

Next Steps

There are a lot of marketing ideas out there for gym & fitness center owners. You don’t have to do all of them. You just have to do one or two well.

Find the one that fits your interests & resources and give it a try. Learn based on your initial experience and improve.

“”

22+ Bank Marketing Ideas To Find More Clients

This post originally appeared at 22+ Bank Marketing Ideas To Find More Clients via ShivarWeb

Bank Marketing Ideas To Find More Clients

Most bank managers would agree that there’s nothing like finding a new client But it’s hard to find a good bank client if you don’t have account applications coming in.

Some banks have a local name brand or location that brings in new clients with nothing more than a “Submit Application” link. But for most banks (especially local banks competing against MegaCorp), you have to go out and market your bank to get a quality pool of potential clients.

I’ve consulted on search marketing with one of the largest FHLB banks in the country in addition to many local businesses. Based on those experiences, here are some bank marketing ideas that you can use to bring in more clients.

Create City-Specific Website Pages

For prospective clients, location searches are usually fraught & confusing. I’ve never seen a bank with a good Branch Locator…even though customers are searching based on their city / neighborhood.

That may sound obvious, but most financial firms that I’ve worked with still don’t focus their marketing on neighborhoods or cities. It’s a lot of work. It’s tedious. But it can still be worthwhile.

If you have multiple branches, use those branch pages to rank for “bank [city / neighborhood] search. Don’t just depend on a single Branch Locator page. Build a specific page for each branch, including information about the surround area.

If you have a single branch, create a neighborhood & next to your neighborhood pages to try to rank for “bank in [neighborhood]” or “bank near me” searches.

Create Niche Offering Pages

Lots of prospective customers have specific features and/or requirements that they want from a bank. Instead of listing your offerings in a giant list, make detailed pages about each amenity. Try to rank for searches like “bank with [offering]”.

You can use Google Suggest for ideas. Go to Google and type in “[city] bank with” and hit space, but not enter. You’ll see some suggestions.

You can do this with the entire alphabet and as many modifiers as you can think of.

Create pages that match those search queries to show up when people search.

If you want to take this to the next level, you can use a tool like SEMrush’s Keyword Explorer to provide phrase match search terms in bulk like this example for “atlanta apartments”.

This idea might be tedious. But it can be fast and scalable. You can use the same template over and over – just customize the details of the service.

Because here’s the thing – a lot of your potentially best customers are already searching out banks with these different services. But they are having to ask about them in random forums and long Google Searches.

Last week, I listened to a podcast episode about searching out banks that do house rehab refinancing loans. The podcast host gave a long tutorial about subscribing to CoreLogic and tracking down banks that did these loans…but what if the bank just had an explainer page about these loans in the local market? You’d be much better positioned to bring in these customers than putting the research work on them.

I personally chose my financial institution because they provided Health Savings Accounts – and had a clear explainer page about setting one up.

Create Local Data Pages

Create resource guides for people moving to or just trying to learn more about to your city. Create lots of them.

Use Google Autosuggest to understand what financial terms people are searching for in your city.

Again, people are doing this research already. Without pages on your site explaining these topics, you are leaving these customers up to the influence of big financial websites where big banks can compete with $$$ ad money.

Develop Your Local Citations & Reviews

You should already have a Google My Business profile so that you can show up in Google Maps.

But you can take it to the next level to show up even more prominently.

First, you can build your Google My Business profile with photos, posts, and full listing details.

Second, go to every local business listing site and make sure that your Business Name, Address, and Phone Number (NAP) match exactly. Whether it’s on the Yellow Pages, Yelp, or elsewhere – everything must match. These are called your “local citations” and Google uses them to confirm the relevance of local business.

You can use SEMrush’s Local Listing Management Tool to audit all these listings quickly.

Third, create a local review strategy. Having diverse, unique, and regular reviews on your Google My Business page is the number one way to get more views (aka lease applications) from Google Maps.

Steal Ideas from Large Local Competitors / Businesses

I’m not a fan of brainstorming. I think that it’s more effective to build off ideas that have already worked.

No matter your size, you can always look to larger competitors or larger businesses for inspiration.

With bank marketing, make a list of local businesses that you *think* are being creative – including companies in different industries and the Megacorp bank making a big local push.

Like local listings and keywords, I then use a marketing tool like SEMrush to spy on those competitors. Type in the URL of a competitor below to see an example.

Here’s an example of what you’ll see from the local car industry.

It looks like a lot. But drill down and categorize each link. You’ll quickly get a sense of what they are doing. You’ll see where they are posting on social media. You’ll see which media outlets have accepted press releases and what types of digital marketing they’re doing.

If you drop in a national bank, you can sift & sort their local mentions. If a national bank has gotten attention from a local source, then you should have an extra shot at the same attention as a local bank.

The trick here is *not* to copy cat them. Instead, take the general idea of what your competitors have done and make it your own – or, make it better.

Work with Local Blogs

Every city, no matter how small, has local publishers and bloggers that get traffic simply because they are local.

In Atlanta, where I live, we have a popular Curbed blog in addition to the AJC Real Estate, Atlanta Business Chronicle, and dozens of smaller neighborhood newspapers and real estate blogs.

Find those and become a regular fixture. All these blogs act on tips & press releases. Very few have a “boots on the ground” journalist. If you can be the place to provide inside information, free images, and consistent write-ups, you’ll earn attention and links. Mine your loan information or business network for tips & local trends. Use those to get attention.

You can also use a Content Explorer tool from SEMrush, Ahrefs, or BuzzSumo to see what news has driven social media shares.

That extra attention and those links will help every other idea on this list. Google loves links. Social media users find URLs via links.

Your neighborhood pages, offering pages, service pages, and everything else on your website will benefit from more inbound links.

Use Hyper-Local Facebook Ads

A local business has one massive advantage against national brands trying to operate locally – you live in your city and understand it.

You know more about the neighborhoods with retirees moving in. You know about the popular and growing dealerships. You know the local business networks.

Facebook allows for hyper-local advertising. You can run ads that show within a radius of only a few miles. It’s tedious to set up, but it’s relevant and effective.

Learn how to create hyper-local targeting for demographics and geography to find lots of interested customers.

You can run small, targeted campaigns that show multiple places at once.

Use Hyper-Local Google Search Ads

Google Search ads are famously effective and famously expensive. The best customer is someone who searches for “bank in [neighborhood]”.

But that search click will be very costly.

But like Facebook, you have an advantage – Google Quality Score. Google will show ads higher if they are more relevant even if they don’t have the high bid.

In other words, Google will reduce your cost per click for a query like “local atlanta bank” compared to Chase or Bank of America because your landing page can actually match that query better than they ever could.

Like Facebook, it’s tedious to set up, but if you can set up a hyper-local campaign, you’ll be able to get Google Search traffic that large competitors can’t bid on.

Use Hyper-Local Google Display Ads

Google’s Display Network also offers opportunities for local advertisers who are willing to put in the work.

Google serves banner & text ads on some of the best ad locations on the Internet. Many placements are expensive for bulk ad buys.

But again, Google would rather serve a relevant ad with a low bid than an irrelevant ad with a high bid. That’s your opportunity to set up a hyper-local campaign focused on specific demographics in a specific area.

List on Locally-Popular Review Websites

Bank & financial review sites are a dime a dozen. They will send traffic to your listing. But they are expensive and require a lot of legwork.

The key is to find a few key review websites that are popular in your area – and list on those.

Or – track down the sites that currently show up for you brand name and work on those.

You can use Google Trends, customer interviews, SEMrush, or simply looking at the Google Search Results to see who is more popular for your city / neighborhood.

List on NextDoor & Local Forums

NextDoor is one of many local social media websites & forums. They are hard to find and hard to join, representing an opportunity for any local, enterprising bank manager.

These networks are interesting because they are specifically local and extremely relevant for financial firms. They also have an early adopter advertising program for truly local businesses.

Advertise / Post on Local Subreddits

Reddit is an attractive website for many industries. But local subreddits are especially interesting for bankmanagers for a couple of reasons.

First, they are hubs for local discussion & recommendations.

Second, they are the first place for people to plan a move visit to ask specific, local questions.

Now, they are decidedly non-commercial with lots of rules. You should get to know them before posting or commenting as a commercial entity.

However, you should explore their sidebar wiki for research.

You should get in touch with the moderators to listen to their rules about business posting. And you should look at running ads or giveaways there.

*Personal aside – this route is how I found my local financial institution. Delta Community Credit Union had high praise on multiple Atlanta subreddit threads.

Develop a Local Financial Pinterest Board

Pinterest is an incredible resource for people looking for local financial tips. You can get in front of prospects with a locally-focused Pinterest board.

Use local photos, sites, etc from your own customer experience to provide ideas. Promote local artists, makers, businesses, events, etc.

Identify Government Resources

Think about how you can leverage your financial and local status to get more attention. There are tons of government and financial websites where you can get a link & profile.

These profiles might not drive much direct traffic, but they will absolutely help your ranking & visibility in search engines and other marketing venues.

Identify & Market Local Employers

Your customers are all working somewhere. And your prospective clients all will want to bank close to their job.

Identify all the largest employers & sources of potential customers nearby. Create resource pages for those employers (especially if they are large).

Create discounts, bonuses, etc. Get in touch with those employers to see if there is a way to collaborate.

Identify & Market Local Schools & Amenities

Take what you did with local employers and do the same with local amenities and resources.

Create pages that act as resource hubs for neighborhood amenities & schools.

Identify & Market Popular Customer Sources

Take previous & existing customers and try to understand where those customers came from and how they found you.

See if there is a way to build off that success.

Cross-Promote Local Non-Profits

Non-profits usually have an incredible offline network, but have a poor online network. If you are investing in your online marketing efforts, try to develop a relationship to cross-promote the non-profits.

Cross-Promote Local Businesses

Your clients frequent lots of local businesses. And those local businesses also would love to have a local financial partner. Offer a way to cross-promote, especially if they have multiple locations or a presence with your target customer. This strategy is basic bank marketing (think appraisers, real estate agents, etc), but taken to the digital world.

Remember that even a link to your website from their website will dramatically help your other online efforts.

Use Events To Get Social Media Attention

Events like openings, financial courses, holiday showings, etc are marketing staples for banks. But events have a bonus effect online.

You can list them on multiple platforms to get extra exposure. Facebook is the best place for this tactic, but it also works on Google, Instagram, and event apps like Meet and Four Square.

You can also sponsor local events and make sure that you are included in all of their social media promotions. You’ll get a lot more visibility compared to only at the event visibility.

Use Local or Industry Focused Videos to Hack Social Media

Like events, most social media gives preference to video in their feeds. Take interesting video with a local take.

Post the file natively to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Pay a small budget to boost it. And look for opportunities to embed it on your website.

Use Digital Referral Fees for Word of Mouth

Referral fees are also a staple of bank marketing. But they don’t get the same reach as digital referral codes.

Whether you use a simple bit.ly link, manually hand out custom codes (i.e., account numbers), or use a software service – digital referral codes can help you move limited physical word of mouth to unlimited digital word of mouth.

Find & Sponsor Local Charities

Sponsoring local charities provides a few marketing benefits.

First, you can likely get a link to your website, which will help your other efforts.

Second, you can tap into a well-networked organization with lots of word of mouth potential.

Third, you can tap into neighborhood goodwill to help with soliciting reviews to help with your Google My Business efforts.

Next Steps

There are a lot of marketing ideas out there for local bank managers. You don’t have to do all of them. You just have to do one or two well.

Find the one that fits your interests & resources and give it a try. Learn based on your initial experience and improve.

“”