While many large businesses can feel faceless and global to a fault, small businesses have the privilege of being situated in a specific area. Their story and current operations may be embedded deep within a certain location, informed by its culture, and staffed by its residents.
This is perhaps much more important than you could realize, unless of course, you have found yourself running a business like this before. The more you can leverage your local community and integrate within it, the better your brand will feel at home there.
Now, the benefits here aren’t that you can use specific local phrases to bring people in (how many Hawaiian businesses instruct their staff to say Aloha at any opportunity?) but it helps you understand how your community functions, what it needs, the actions it appreciates, and the differences you could make within it.
As such, it’s important not to clean your brand image of any integration into the local community so you appeal to those further beyond, but to lean into it, and be proud of it. In this post, we’ll discuss but a few of the side benefits this can bring:
Embracing Your Local Presence
From joining the local food fair to cater to your clients, to sponsoring the little league team around the corner from your office, there’s nothing quite like investing and helping to grow your local community. This helps you build a sense of participation and inclusion within your local area, and as such, locals will also pay you the same respect, or think of you when they need particular services. Becoming a local presence isn’t just good for your brand, it’s good for learning how your services are received, understood, integrated into daily life, and competed against.
Local Knowledge Is Always Helpful
When you know the place you operate from on an intimate level, you can negotiate it more readily. That might involve using roadside assistance services to tow junk cars from your property, or how to talk to the authorities about homeless encampments outside of your offices without causing a scene, and inspiring you to donate to the local shelters and causes. There’s a sense of real belonging and place that occurs when you leverage local services and engage with the issues on your doorstep, and of course, being seen as a visible force of good and order in your community is hardly a bad idea.
Your Character Is Defined By Being One Of Them
It’s not hard to see how brands can take a life of their own by association with other people or places. For example, many people think of Kentucky when thinking of KFC, not only because it’s in the name but because the original character of the brand is readily defined and preserved. Your own firm could perhaps utilize that sense of place and history and culture within your own brand. No matter how shrewd a marketer or copywriter you may be, nothing could be as diverse, interesting, evocative and interesting as the local history of an area that mean something to you. It helps you avoid all the artificial storytelling outside of how your business was founded and your mission. People respond to that kind of authenticity.
With this advice, you’re sure to benefit from engaging in the local community through and through.