A quick Google search for ‘Macclesfield’ recently got us thinking.
It’s one of the easiest ways for us to keep on top of what’s happening in the area on a daily basis; keep the local papers in our browser favourites and do a Google News search to see if there’s anything we’ve missed.
As we pointed out last month though, sometimes the news isn’t all that fun to read. Macclesfield town centre has an incredibly high rate of empty units available, and it may take something special to reverse what is a situation affecting high streets across the UK.
We mentioned, though, in that very same post how inbound marketing can help new and established businesses in the Macclesfield area to carve a new digital path for themselves online to attract new customers, build stronger relationships with the ones who matter to them most and potentially boost sales.
The right approach to inbound marketing can also make you GDPR-compliant, improve the way you collect consumer data if you approach it in an organic, ethical fashion, and potentially future-proof you against any legislative changes related to marketing that may occur if you keep your ear to the ground and adjust your campaign accordingly.
But first, you need to get noticed on a local level
That’s just scratching the surface, though. There are a huge number of possibilities that an inbound marketing campaign could bring to your business, but it’s important to understand that a creative campaign is an evolving process that’s entirely bespoke to your business and goals.
The first stage is to get noticed, and that’s what we noticed when we did our Macclesfield search recently.
It’s everybody in the area’s dream to get their site ranking as highly as possible for such a broad, consistently-searched term as ‘Macclesfield’, though on the day we did our search only three businesses appeared; Macclesfield Town FC, Macclesfield College and King’s School Macclesfield.
That’s not really too surprising if you have an idea of how Google and SEO works; competition to rank highly for such a generic keyword can be incredibly fierce. What you should note, though, are the other links that rank highly, mainly links for news providers focusing on the area, tourism sites and review sites.
There’s no reason at all that your business can’t appear on sites such as those as part of a wider, creative inbound marketing strategy.
Some businesses try to do it themselves. Some employ the skills of a pricey PR agency who they believe can help them get more local notoriety, while some are already working toward an inbound marketing strategy of their very own.
For some, those methods can work. As the state of our high street suggests though, local businesses could be doing more from an inbound marketing point-of-view to better attract footfall and cement their relationships with repeat customers.
Here are five ways they can do that with inbound
Before starting anything, it’s so incredibly important to sit down and assess your business, its current capabilities and what you want your inbound marketing strategy to achieve in the short-, medium- and long-term.
That initial strategy, revisited and revised on a regular basis, is without a doubt the most important of any local inbound marketing campaign.
Not only does it help you to use the channels most important to attracting more custom in Macclesfield (such as social media, SEO, content creation, email marketing…) but also helps you find out more about the people most important to you, drilled-down demographics, where they spend their time online and how best to get in front of them.
Here are just some of the ways we think businesses can increase their chances of getting noticed in Macclesfield with inbound marketing:
1: Keep your ear to the ground and join social groups
Social media is about more than having a profile on Facebook or Twitter. We’ve recently pointed out some of the local businesses who are using social media to great effect by being active, for instance.
Social media isn’t very good unless you use it. You can create Google Alerts, for instance, to discover events happening in your area or that are relevant to your business that you can join in with. Participating in local Facebook and LinkedIn groups can also help raise your profile and generate targeted leads.
2: Create your own content and spread it wide
Some business owners become shy when it comes to self promotion. Don’t be; the most successful people create their own luck and you need to let people know you exist.
A strong content marketing strategy is key to getting noticed more by local residents, and it can be even more effective when partnered with outreach channels such as social media and email marketing; 76% of people use their Facebook feed to find interesting content, for instance. Are you doing enough?
3: Approach tourism sites and council-level projects
Inbound marketing can also work well on PR terms. One of the higher-ranking sites for ‘Macclesfield’ on Google is Visit Macclesfield, for instance.
By creating some relevant content to better show yourself off online, there’s no reason at all why you can’t reach out to sites such as Visit Macclesfield through social media or other channels to see what the possibility is of being featured on their guide. That can also work on a council level; try and build relationships that matter.
4: Target media outlets and Macclesfield blogs
That goes for other local media outlets, from amateur blogs to more established news outlets such as the Manchester Evening News and even the BBC.
Again, it’s so important to work on your content and overall inbound strategy here to discover what you should send journalists, writers and site owners and the best way to do it. Create something relevant and newsworthy to send them and there’s every chance you could be featured in the local press. It could also help you out in SEO terms, too.
5: Be consistent!
All of the above avenues can be incredibly effective from a local inbound marketing perspective, but it’ll count for little if you do it on a one-off basis.
Again, shout who you are from the rooftops and do so consistently. You’re more likely to see inbound website traffic increase from local sources and have more social media interactions if you’re proactive and consistently engage with the wider community in Macclesfield.
Don’t have time to do it? We can take the weight off your hands as a local inbound marketing agency. Contact the Web Presence team today and speak to an expert today!
Working as a Digital Marketing Consultant since 2004, Lee helps SMEs win more business through developing effective digital marketing strategies. He is a dedicated Liverpool FC fan, dog lover and loves long country walks (and a cheeky pint) with his dog, Banjo.