If you’re a regional business with a distinct footprint, you’re in luck! The power of digital geo-targeting and social strategy have made it easier (and more cost-effective) than ever before to engage your markets, grow your brand, drive awareness of events and build communities.
So what have we learned from being a regional business for almost 80 years? Change is the constant in every business today! Here in Jersey City, the fastest growing city in the state, our markets are shifting so rapidly that our team is constantly analyzing how changes are shaping the landscape for our clients and the business community at large. Identifying these trends early on helps us build informed and proactive strategic plans to get our clients where they want to be before the competition.
In our last blog, we covered strategic planning. Here are some additional areas of focus to consider in order to make a sustained impact in your unique market. Remember, marketing isn’t a sprint, it’s a marathon!
Know your Numbers
It may seem obvious, but consumers today are more empowered than ever and you need to always put them first. Understanding the value of your business and the services it provides through the eyes of your customer is the first step in charting your future. Find out key answers to critical questions regarding levels of satisfaction, preferred methods of communication and thoughts regarding referrals to help open pathways of communication that can supercharge your marketing efforts. Anonymous online surveys and more in-depth research are valuable investments to ensure your marketing efforts are aligned with your audience’s expectations. The resulting analytics, if integrated properly into your marketing mix, will help reduce costs and increase profits.
Personalize your Content
A one size fits all approach to branding and marketing may work for national seeking to influence through market saturation, but does that approach work when you have a limited budget and specific audiences in mind? As the state and county’s landscape continues to evolve it will be critical for organizations to adapt accordingly and embrace change at the most individual level for the specific user in order to meet them where they are. Consider cultural differences, languages spoken, gender and socio-economic factors when developing your outreach methods for each group. Cultivating a brand personality that is flexible and consistently informed by your unique audiences will lead to brand “stickiness” for meaningful, long term engagement.
The Impact of Influence
We often equate the term “influencer” with global stars such as Beyoncé or “The Rock”, but at the local level, the term takes on another significance and can make a real difference in how your business, mission or event is perceived and embraced. Today, the press, local elected officials, entrepreneurs and consumers can all have a dramatic effect on brand awareness.
For example, the City of Jersey City got a significant “shout out” on Z100 from radio personality Carla Marie during our “Make It Yours” campaign which helped drive significant awareness of all the city had to offer. Similar strategies have been deployed for local initiatives such as the Hudson County Chamber of Commerce’s #HudsonGives fundraising event which we helped launch by harnessing the power of community with Social Media influence and word of mouth. Simply put, Influencer Marketing is really all about working your network and clearly communicating your goals and objectives through a consistent and clear message. To start, take a look at your most engaged board members, fans and clients and ask them to help get the word out!
Think and Act Globally
Global thinking on a local level has been a hallmark of our approach to marketing from the very beginning. To some, this may seem like an obvious one, but often times it takes more than merely working in a specific area and understanding the market through analytics to really move the needle. Understanding markets from the inside out takes an investment of time and energy that goes far beyond strategic plans and data. The rubber really meets the road when you get out there to sponsor local events, build partnerships with like-minded businesses and network like crazy. Investing in your unique community is one of the true strengths of regional businesses and particularly unique to Hudson County.
The pace of business, particularly as generational and cultural shifts occur here in Hudson County can provide incredible opportunities for organizations capable of unlocking the power of community on the most local level. Keep thinking strategically about your marketing plans by truly listening to your audiences to better connect with them today and in the future.