When it comes to marketing and advertising, small businesses are often required to walk a challenging tightrope.

While many may not have the abundant financial resources to invest heavily in such a discipline, SMEs must create campaigns that can effectively promote their brand and compete within a chosen market.

With this in mind, there are two considerations for small and independent businesses.

Firstly, SMEs must do their best to leverage cost-effective marketing channels such as social media, as this will help them to optimise their ROI and reach a larger target audience.

Secondary to this is the need to strategically invest whatever marketing capital that you do have access to, as you identify the channels and techniques that will offer the greatest value to your business.

Interestingly, local billboard advertising may represent one of the most effective marketing methods for small businesses. Even in the digital age, this type of offline technique can deliver huge benefits to SMEs, particularly those that are looking to establish themselves and their brand within their regional community.

Here are five ways in which your small business can profit from local billboards: –

#1 – You can Build a Loyal and Local Consumer Base

Whether your small business is product or service-based, you will need to consolidate its launch by securing a loyal, local customer base.

This not only helps to drive repeat business over a sustained period of time, but it also explains the significant popularisation of local SEO and geo-targeted advertising that we have seen over the course of the last five years.

The deployment of local billboards represents a similar tactic, as it enables you to place a prominent advert (or series of adverts) that has a visual impact on the members of your community.

Although your budget will determine precisely how many billboards you can invest in within your target region, these can be placed strategically in order to reach the largest possible number of locals.

So whether you focus on placing smaller billboards on your local high street or create a larger print advert for a busy traffic route, the key thing to remember is that you utilise your local knowledge and reach as many potential customers as possible with your campaign.

#2 – You can Target Specific Demographics within your Community

Of course, not every small business will cater for mainstream customer needs, and for niche ventures it is important to reach carefully profiled and targeted consumers.

Even in this instance local billboard advertising is still effective, however, particularly when it is combined with an innate knowledge of your products and their desired audience.

It is certainly a better alternative than TV or radio advertising, which are far more expensive options and less likely to deliver a viable return.

Let’s say that you own a niche health-store, for example, and sell a range of products that are designed to aid weight-loss.

While you will still need to target customers who live within the local proximity of your business with your billboard, it is important to reserve some of your spend for locations that help you to reach a specific type of consumer rather than a desired number.

Placing a billboard near a popular gymnasium may be appropriate, for example, as will targeting local parks where fitness initiatives are regularly commenced.

Just remember; when it comes to targeting specific consumer demographics within your local community, the location of your billboard is pivotal.

#3 – You can Tailor your Marketing Message based on Consumer Insight

When used in conjunction with the principles of analytical CRM, local billboards represent an excellent way to sell a brand, product or service.

This is because detailed consumer profiles and insight can help you to truly understand your customers, while also reinforcing the local trends, language and customs that your target audience can identify with.

With a specific marketing spend attributed to local billboards, you can create tailored and impactful print campaigns that genuinely engage customer within a targeted region.

Whether this includes the playful use of regional slang or simply leverages a local hero or landmark, such an approach ensures that you are left with a billboard that a target audience will understand and relate to.

If you are so inclined, you may even want to poke fun at a local stereotype, although this must be done with tact and the utmost care if you are to achieve your marketing goals.

#4 – You can leverage local Partnerships when placing your Billboard Ads

If there is one thing that local businesses thrive on, it is the partnerships that they build within the community.

This not only applies to customers, as the partnerships that you enter into with other, local companies and service providers can also be worth their weight in gold in the current climate.

These relationships can also be leveraged when placing your local billboard ads, particularly when you are looking to sell products through established chains and independent stores.

Once you have sold a particular product or range into a popular supermarket in the local area, you may be able to advertise this prominently either with an on-site billboard or by placing one along the main route towards the store.

Amiable local partnerships help this process, while they also create the opportunity for further collaboration in the future.

Such a tactic will also help your business to capitalise on the fact that 70% of purchasing decisions are made while shopping or in-store, where a well-placed local billboard could have a considerable impact in the minds of consumers.

#5 – You can Leverage an Advertising Platform that is free to the user

Let’s face fact’s; the British economy is strained and the combination of Brexit, rising inflating and stagnating earnings is continuing to impact on disposable income levels.

As a result of this, customers are increasingly price-sensitive in the modern age, and far more likely to appreciate advertising that is free to access.

Local billboard advertising is, therefore, an extremely viable option, as it remains a universal medium that is entirely free to the user.

By positioning print adverts prominently and at your own expense, you can redefine the proposition of your message and reinforce your understanding of the challenges that local customers face.

So rather than selling products through mediums that customers must pay to access, you can market goods through complimentary channels while creating a sense of trust and solidarity with your audience.

The Last Word

These are just some of the many benefits associated with local billboard advertising, and there is no doubt that this medium offers small businesses a unique opportunity to optimise their reach and ROI.

So while it may be tempting to focus solely on digital channels such as social media in the modern age, remember that some paid and offline marketing mediums continue to offer considerable value.