Going back to the beginning of your story when you first got the idea of your business, you possibly imagined that your business would grow, become part of the community and be successful. No one imagines failure for the things they want to do, and now as there are so many fantastic opportunities and ways that people can work for themselves, more people are taking that plunge and creating their businesses.
When it comes to small businesses, there is no better time than to really work on growing your company and your business ideas. More people are now loving the idea of supporting small businesses they find online, as well as shopping local to support businesses within the community. It isn’t about boycotting some of the bigger names, it is more to do with having a thriving community feel, as well as supporting people that have stepped out on their own and tried something new. Smaller businesses tend to be niche, a little different from the norm and people just love that feeling of something new. So how can you make more of this yourself for your small business? I thought I would share with you some of the ideas to consider.
Get involved in local community events
Many local communities hold events. It might be to raise awareness or money for certain aspects of the area such as parks, green belts or even village squares or smaller parts of the village or town. It could be family focused, or just something for fun throughout the year. Some communities will be more active with this than others, so you may want to consider getting involved with as many as you can. As a business you can be involved in community events through sponsorship, which in turn gives you advertising. It might be that you are involved in terms of donations, hosting, or even being part of the event. It might even be as simple as advertising it yourself, maybe in your shop window or on your website. No matter how big or small, getting involved gives you the chance to open up your business to your community audience in an informal way.
Create your own business event for the community
If you find that your community doesn’t have many events, or perhaps none really cater to you, then why not consider creating your own? This could be a real great way to open up your community audience to your business and what you are all about. Setting up trade show displays and allowing other businesses locally to be part of it could be a great way to boost sales. However, in order attract people, you won’t want to make it one giant long sales pitch. So this is when you may want to work on some entertainment, maybe making it family focused or hosting the vent outside to make more use of the space. This can make it a more informal setting and an ideal way to attract more customers to your business.
Work alongside a local charity
Working with a charity may not seem like the obvious choice, but actually the business relationship can be worthwhile on both parts. Sponsorship for the charity means that the charity will gain donations to their cause from you, in turn you will then receive advertising opportunities at any charity events, your logo and business might be on their marketing information and it could be a real great way to help eachother out. On another side, people like to see that businesses give back, so being actively involved with something local could help boost your reputation in that way while enabling the charity to get what they want in return, which is likely monetary donations and advertising through you.
Join forces with with local businesses
The likelihood is that you will be the only person doing your thing in your local vicinity. That is a good thing as you have a dedicated audience that could potentially come to you for all of their needs. However, the other benefit of this is that other businesses local to you are not exactly your direct competition, which means that you can consider joining forces with them on different things. Maybe marketing campaigns, joint offers or working on local events together. The relationship could be very worthwhile on both parts.
Create amazing shop fronts
If you have a local store, then why not make more of the window you have in the area? More people are taking pride in their local areas, and wanting to make sure they look their best and your shop window can just be part of that along with everyone else. Some towns and villages even have yeary competitions for the best window dressing. It may just be something simple, or as elaborate as you want it to be, but it could also be another marketing ploy to attract people to your store.
Use it as part of your marketing campaign
If you are focusing on your local community, then the best idea would be to use it as part of any marketing and advertising you do. Whether you source local ingredients for things, use local materials, are proud to be in that vicinity, make it part of your advertising and your branding to really get the message heard. People tend to be quite proud of where they live, and if you show that through your business, it could be another way of enticing new customers to you.
Take pride in the community you are part of
Finally, be proud of where you are based. Your community could be a huge part of your business, you may have had your very idea stemmed from where you live or reside, so be proud of that. Get involved, talk to customers, and be a firm part of the community. It is good for them as it is good for you and your business.
I hope that this has given you some insight on how you can make more of the shop small and shop local trends.