In the beginning stages of your business, you’re in bootstrap mode and focused on making a profit. You won’t have access to the manpower and resources that the more established businesses have. Instead, you’ll be focused only on what’s necessary. Does that mean that you have to settle for lack-luster results from your local marketing efforts? Of course not. In fact, there are tools that you can use to keep up with the competition.
The advancement of technology has made it easier for local businesses to beat out more established business. As important as local marketing is, it can be difficult to manage everything manually and next to impossible to cover all your bases. However, local marketing software takes the headache out of keeping up with the competition.
Even with a smaller business—and by small, we mean less than two employees—you can make a big impact using local marketing software. It augments your efforts and makes it simple to manage your business’ local digital footprint. The truth of the matter is, that when it comes to local marketing you’re only as good as the tools you use. Are you currently using any local marketing software?
If you’re not, or you’re looking for recommendations, you’re in the right place. In no particular order, let’s take a look at seven of the best local marketing solutions.
When it comes to local marketing, consistency is golden. Something as simple as managing your NAP across platforms can be challenging, let alone all the other pieces of data that local customers use to help them make a decision. Yext takes the guesswork out of the process. It helps you to manage your business’ presence all at once in a single interface, including social media. Benefit: Yext allows you to make changes in real time to all your listings, whenever you need to. Disadvantage: In order to retain its benefits, you’ll have to keep paying monthly, even if you don’t make any changes to your listings for a few months. Recommendation: Best for a business with a small team that is in the beginning stages of setting up its local marketing presence.
If you don’t have the budget to hire a full-time local marketing manager, Thrive Hive is your next best option. It provides a “guided marketing” solution for small business that takes much of the guesswork out of advertising and lead generation. Essentially, you can handle all your marketing in one place with Thrive Hive. Benefits: There is no hopping from software-to-software with Thrive Hive, everything can be done in one place, from event scheduling and direct mail, to social media post scheduling and everything in between. Disadvantages: Access to all their features can cost up to $700/month, which may be out of the range of some small businesses. Recommendation: Highest rated all-in-one solution.
3. Moz Local
Like Yext, Moz Local allows small businesses to manage their online listings in one place. However, Moz Local goes one step further and focuses on local search engine optimization. In addition to ensuring that your business is NAP consistent across every channel, Moz can help build valuable backlinks that will boost your business’ SEO. Benefits: Moz allows you to monitor reviews, which come in handy since so many potential customers check reviews before purchasing. Disadvantages: Though Moz is one of the cheapest options at $99/year, their basic plan doesn’t offer much in terms of SEO help. Recommendation: Cheapest local marketing management software.
What’s the benefit of local marketing if you can’t track and analyze your results? BrightLocal makes it possible for you to do just that, and more! Much like Yext and Moz Local, it gives you the opportunity to update thousands of business listings online, more than much other local marketing software. Additionally, it allows you to track your search engine ranking, making it easier to track what works and what does. Benefits: BrightLocal is flexibly priced, with each listing running you anywhere from $2-3. Disadvantages: It only works in four countries: the US, Canada, Australia, and the UK. Recommendation: Highest rated for local marketing agencies.
Search engine optimization is one of the biggest factors in local marketing and WhiteSpark makes it possible for your business to rise in the rankings. With WhiteSpark, you can get local citations that create backlinks which will boost where your business shows up in local searches. Benefits: Find citations that your competitors have, build your reputation through reviews and track your rank. Disadvantages: Most paid options have limits, and the free trial isn’t very usable. Recommendation: Best search optimization tool for local marketing of its class.
With BrightEdge, business owners get an end-to-end solution for their local marketing needs. This software has tools for each step—search, content, social, local, and mobile. It is a one-stop solution for every aspect of your local marketing, that will save you both time and money in the long run. Benefits: The reports are easy to read and implement, making local marketing less complicated. Disadvantages: It’s not the most user-friendly platform, and requires a learning curve to make use of all the features. Recommendation: Best for an enterprise-level business who needs more in-depth local marketing, or an agency.
BuzzStream is another great local marketing tool, that focuses more on link building and PR for businesses. With this software, you’re able to manage campaigns, contacts and email distribution. It is perfect for the more manual side of getting backlinks and exposure for your website. Benefits: The most powerful PR tool out there for businesses. Disadvantages: A learning curve and not very stylish user interface. Recommendation: Best for businesses that need lots of PR and backlinks. All in all, local marketing software can make or break your small business. These seven options can all help you in one way or another to completely revolutionize how you do local marketing. The sky is the limit with local marketing software.