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3 Tips for Small Businesses to Generate Local Brand Awareness

MAY 20, 2020|


Graphics, Retail, Signage

The small business economy is booming. Not only is corporate profitability at its highest in seven years, but favorable GDP growth and climbing rates of consumer spending have also made the past few years some of the strongest for small businesses.

It comes as no surprise that small-business owners are also reporting record-high levels of confidence in their sector.

However, even in a strong climate, business ownership is not without its obstacles, and 15% of small-business owners say that marketing and advertising remains a top challenge for them.

Generating awareness for your brand is almost as important as the product or service itself, so getting the word about your small business on a local level is crucial.

Here are three tips for small businesses to generate local brand awareness:

1. Invest in Impactful Exterior Signage

Eye-catching signage is one of the most fundamental marketing tools, and it could not be more important for small businesses. A creative, attractive sign outside your business helps strengthen your brand, stand apart from the competition and drive foot traffic.

Bringing customers through the door can be one of the biggest challenges for small-business owners, and strong exterior signage is critical to attracting new customers.

A custom business sign lets customers know who you are and what you offer, grabbing their attention while also informing them about your business. Many American consumers go into a store where they’d never before shopped just because of the sign. In places with heavy foot traffic, this kind of pull can bring in a significant chunk of revenue. Think of buildings with storefront signs that grab your attention during a walk through town — taking a detour sounds pretty appealing when you’re interested in the signage.

A sign can also influence word-of-mouth advertising, as many customers tell someone else about a business thanks to its signs.


Clear custom outdoor signage is critical to help people find your business.

A small business’ sign can also be an influential word-of-mouth marketing tool, with 75 percent of consumers saying they have told someone about a store based on its signage. For smaller, hard-to-find businesses, clear custom outdoor signage is critical to helping people find your building in the first place. If your online presence is strong, people may find you online but struggle to find you in-person. By simply making your business more visible and easily accessible, you can substantially increase your foot traffic – especially from passersby who may check out your business on a whim.

Exterior signage is one of the most worthwhile and cost-effective marketing investments you can make as a small-business owner, and it goes a long way in generating strong local awareness.

2. Form Local Partnerships and Give Back to the Community

Small businesses are the backbone of any community, largely driving local economies, putting money back into the community and strengthening the entire local business environment. That’s why so many consumers go out of their way to support local businesses.

If you are a small business owner, the community is one of your greatest assets – so leverage it to grow your presence and foster brand loyalty.

Forming partnerships with local schools, charities and other organizations is another cost-effective marketing tool that will generate local buzz for your brand.

Look for opportunities to sponsor a local sports team, or donate some of your time, products or services to local charities. By getting more involved in the community, you can foster a substantial degree of local brand awareness.

You will also establish yourself as a pillar to the community and create strong brand loyalty affinity among local consumers. More than ever, people are looking to support local small businesses that share their values, so they know their money is benefiting their community.

In fact, 85% of consumers have a more positive image of a company that gives back, and 90% of consumers want to know how companies support charitable and community causes.

Many of these local partnerships will give you the opportunity to put your logo in front of more people, too. See if you can get your image on marketing materials. A sports team, for instance, might have a custom outdoor sign thanking their sponsors, and you can get your name on it, improving brand awareness. Attendees will associate you with community support.

3. Grow Your Online Presence

Local familiarity and face-to-face customer interactions and engagement represent some of your strongest differentiators and draws as a small business.

At the same time, your online brand is critical in today’s digital age, and building that online presence doesn’t need to require thousands of dollars or hours of your time each day. Countless cost-effective, easy-to-use digital marketing tools that are built specifically for small businesses.

For example, Google My Business is a free, useful tool that can help you increase your visibility on Google’s search engine and map feature. You can also create and customize your listing while interacting with customers online through reviews, post updates, images and Q&A sections.

Yelp is another strong digital marketing tool you can leverage at no cost. It offers small-business owners another free listing resource to reach and engage with consumers.

A powerful digital presence can bring in more customers and improve brand awareness.

By creating social media pages for your business, you can also keep your brand top-of-mind for customers, keep them up-to-date on new deals and promotions and guide them to your website. A powerful digital presence can both bring people into your location and improve people’s familiarity with your company.

Creating Strong Brand Awareness for Your Small Business

Regardless of the size of your business or audience, two things remain true – there are always more potential customers out there, and you only stand to gain from increasing your business’ reach.

When you increase your local brand awareness, you can reach a captured target audience, grow your client base and establish yourself and your brand as a community cornerstone.

Investing in strong outdoor signage, participating in community outreach initiatives and leveraging digital marketing strategies are some of the easiest – and most cost-effective – ways to grow your brand on a local level.

We can help with that first one. Custom outdoor business signs and storefront signage are some of our specialties. Learn more about how SpeedPro’s tailored graphics solutions can take your small business to the next level by contacting your local studio.

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