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Techniques to generate local
leads for direct outreach

By Leo Preston*

local business icon

The greatest challenge that local businesses are faced with is direct outreach to their potential clients, which is mostly as a result of default contact information. The last thing that comes to mind for most people when trying to find something local is to sift through the phone book. Last year, Pew Internet & American life Project study revealed that approximately 51% U.S. adults acquire local business information via the internet, as opposed to word-of-mouth, phone books, TV reporting and newspapers.

So now the big question is, is your local business good at generating online leads? If not, then here are some methods you can employ to generate good local business leads for direct outreach.

1. Generate a website with your domain

Statistics show that up to half of small businesses have no websites. In most cases, those companies rely only on social media sites to market their businesses, which is a great thing of course. However, the social media platform should be an addition and not a replacement for your website generation. WordPress is an example of great software for building websites which is highly customizable, and also allows for easy combination of social widgets.

2. Utilize keywords for local traffic attraction

There are several ways one can employ to generate traffic for their website. The least vital things your site should have is the phone number and physical address, as well as keywords in header tags, page title and in the page content where relevant. Utilize online research tools such as Wordtracker, Google AdWords and Keyword Discovery to research on the most commonly used phrases and words by people when searching for your type of service or product.

3. Make customers out of your visitors

Contact fill-in forms for your visitors are a great start to the outreach. You can also add free downloadable guides, worksheets or ‘how to’ kits, to become a useful resource and trusted advisor by aiding potential clients as they draw near towards a making a purchase decision. Have your visitors provide their contact information in exchange for the free downloadable guides.

4. Generation of local profiles

Assert your profile on online local business directories and search engines such as Google Places, and Yelp. If you do not assert your profile, your business will remain invisible and you also risk allowing others to publish defective information regarding you and your business. SEO’s prefer consistency therefore ensure to enlist the name, address and phone number of your business in the same manner across the web.

5. Rally reviews

Client testimonials especially positive ones increase conversation rates and click-through as well as enhance SEO ranking. Positive reviews not only validate your business to search engines but also to people in general.

6. CMS & Hosting

Decent hosting is a great investment, but be careful not to be hosted on the same IP as someone who dishes out spam mails, a hacker or has been hacked, or someone who has no business whatsoever being in a shared setting.

7. Blogging

Extend your keyword search and use Google Suggest or other Google related search results to develop great long trails. Who is your target when generating content? If your target is just one city, you can display your homepage in Google Local, but if your target is much wider, create a page with URL containing the keyword and city name, and add at least 1000-1500 word content. Make sure your page is optimized.

8. Social media

Create FaceBook, Twitter, Youtube, G+, and LinkedIn accounts. These accounts should include the logos to your site. An account with no followers is as good as nothing. You can pay people with thousands of followers to promote your account. Just remember, when building a social account, it is not just about promoting your business, but also promoting your competition. This will definitely look great from the stand point of activity as well as add onto your followers list for those who are curious.

The success of your business relies or leads generation. Therefore, invest your time and effort on the direct outreach to enhance your business’s success.

*Author Bio: Leo Preston, the author of this article, is a business entrepreneur who spends her free time researching and writing about business oriented content. Being a businesswoman herself, she understands the challenges her fellow businessmen face when generating leads for their businesses, which is why she shared the above article hoping to provide useful techniques on how to overcome such challenges and emerge top. She finds BuildPath to be a great informative site on online businesses and marketing.

25 March 2015