The telephone book is dead, Local SEO makes your phone ring
On the front step today was our new telephone book, carefully protected in a plastic bag. I took it out and switched it with the old telephone book which we kept in a drawer. I was amazed that the old telephone book looked almost new. It didn’t seem that long ago, that our telephone was dog eared from overuse. Now it’s barely used.
Maybe I’m getting old, but if I need to find a number for a business I use Google. The numbers aren’t just easier to read. Even if a business has a large ad in the telephone book, it can’t give me directions. And it seldom does it contain testimonials or recommendations.
Our family is typical of most families. One survey said that that most Americans no longer use their telephone book. And this percentage is growing by the day. Think about it? If you’re looking for a restaurant or a pizza place you use your smart phone to find a number and then just click to call. If you’re looking for a Realtor or a lawyer you’re likely looking online so that you can find out what services they provide and look for testimonials. Or you’re posting something on Facebook to get some recommendations from friends.
Local SEO is one of the most important marketing tools you can have for your business if you serve a community or a number of locations. It puts you front and center of people actively looking for your business. It's what will make your phone ring. What other forms of marketing can do that for you? Most other forms of local marketing have significant limitations.
Inbound marketing has proven to not only be more effective than outbound marketing its much more cost effective. Hubspot found that to get a lead using outbound marketing techniques costs 60% more than leads generated by inbound marketing.
If you’re business that serves a specific community, think about your options. Newspapers advertising, but subscription numbers are dropping by the day and the only market it targets is people who live in your community. What about people traveling there or planning to move there soon. Radio is cheaper, but has even more limitations. You’re not only targeting people in your community, but also a specific type of music lover. If your ad runs on a rock station then what about prospects who like country or listen to sports stations.
What about billboards? They can certainly attract attention. But if you sell insurance then perhaps one of those driving by actually is in the need for some. But if that billboard is up for a month, then what about the other 11 months? Or the people who never pass through that area.
Another problem with most marketing platforms is that they cost each time to run. Even if you hire a firm that specialized in Local SEO such as Ad Hoc Marketing, you’ll continue to generate business long after their work is completed. Having your Google Places listing done properly, having a business page on Facebook, having an optimized site and getting listed in other local directories puts you in touch with people not just in your community, but who are soon traveling there.
If you’re like most small businesses you need to prudent with your marketing budget. Is it worth it to take out an ad in a book that seldom is used or an ad in a newspaper that only runs when you pay their fee? Even if you’re not a small business owner, you still want to get the most value for your money. Local SEO gets you found not just on prospects computers, but more and more their phones.
If you’d like to learn more about SEO and its potential for your business, then contact Ad Hoc Marketing today.