How do you balance 'being local' and 'being everywhere' for your customers?
My marketing strategy is to 'be everywhere'. However, sometimes I find that when I focus on reaching customers outside of my local area that I miss out on attracting customers through local events, publications, school programs, etc. Then when I'm focusing just on local customers, I think there is so much more I could be doing. Where is the balance?
I let my website reach out beyond the local market while I focus (time in front of people and some advertising) on the local market. For me, local means I target locations within one hour driving time although I accept clients beyond that at my discretion.
I don't use a corporate template for the website because I want it to be me. I write the copy in my words with my personality (it doesn't look and sound canned) using the expertise I have developed over 15 years.. I focus on teaching about my services so people get an understanding. Sure, I do a little selling - contact me or fill in this form - but people can see quickly that they are getting value from the website. I have a number of people contact me having only 'met' me through the website asking me to help them from a distance in what frequently is a face-to-face business.
But the website also is useful in my local market. When someone finds me by phone but doesn't really want to meet face-to-face, I refer them to my website. It is a soft way to develop rapport in a business that frequently requires sincerity and multiple contacts.
I think this is the first time I don't really agree with what people are saying here. I completely agree with you. You need to be everywhere. If you are not everywhere, you are losing out, big time. In your business, having an art gallery is one of the rare businesses that actually can attract people from all over the world if done right.
Focusing on the local market to attract local artists and then market those artists to all corners of the world will provide many opportunities. And lets face it, New York is the best place in the world where you could actually pull this off.
Focusing on attracting visitors from all over the world would be my approach and that is how you take care of the local market as well as the rest of the world.
I may be wrong but my first thought was to go to tourism offices to get them to help you advertise your business to tourists. This could open up a whole new world and if you are in a good location, people might just drop by to look at some of the amazing art you have advertised.
Another thought would be any other tourist attractions and maybe create a package with one or some of them. Especially the artistic side of the tourism sector might be of interest such as museums, other art galleries (there is different arts, so find the one's that are more in line with what you offer), you already mentioned schools. There is plenty more I'm sure if you really start looking locally on how to attract tourists. Hotels might be another good source for you to showcase what you've got.
Online might be a good way to sell art as well. This is new and not everybody's cup of tea but a lot of people buy paintings, sculptures etc online now.
So, to summarise, focus on the local tourism sector and that will already open up the world.
I hope this is a bit helpful to you. Good luck with the business and let me know if you need any further clarification.
Thank you and regards
Build your company from a Marketing Driven Perspective based upon the tripod of:
Customers, Profits and Employees...Try to keep them in balance, aim for sweet spots---This will promote TRUST
Have you considered that you might have a wrong marketing strategy?
Research shows that local companies are more profitable than the global corporations. If you want to be everywhere, you'd be better off with selling a franchise and thus you would need a different business model. But somehow, I do not think that this is what you intended to do.
I would personally advise you to concentrate on your local community and perhaps bring in something that has not been available there. One example that comes to my mind is Banksy taking over a museum in Bristol. In the first month of his exhibition there were more visitors to the museum than in the previous history of the museum since its creation...And btw. traffic at the Bristol Airport doubled...
I think my Esteemed Colleagues have covered it well. I would summarize by saying "Act Global, Be Local." It is not an either or in this day and Age. The other key word that should use is "Activation." Activation with Customers is key. To get Repeat Business, you must Earn the right. So, how will you Activate your Relationship with your Customers?
What product line? That's important. No one is everywhere. Not even coke or pepsi. There is a limit or there are limits to service, product line, Presentation, Promotion, Partners, delivery (Place) and making money.
I taught MBA Marketing classes at several colleges and universities including USC, CSUN and all five campuses of Pepperdine.
Here's one of the most important concepts taught including in the capstone MBA class: Success can boil down to two things...building revenue and cutting or maintaining costs.
Review the 4P's and 9P's of Marketing. Good luck. All the best.
I think in any form, the balancing is not correct as it makes no sense being that what would you want to achieve for such balancing is not clear at all.
If you compare 'being local' and 'being everywhere', what are you looking for? seeking 'to do more' compare 'to be more productive'?
If I am you, I will first look at what I wanted to have for my business and make a check which action ('being local' and 'being everywhere') is more appropriate to achieve my intention.
You really have to ask yourself which market has brought you most success and profit to date? You seem to have tried both local and 'everywhere'.
Also, what are your overheads to do the two options, compared with the turnover achieved form each?
It would be better if I knew what market you were in but in general business you must research your options then put your effort into the most profitable route forward.
Kevin McCarthy provided some excellent focused advice: "In general, master your local market first - put 80 to 90% of your time there. This will help you clarify your target audiences, engage them in conversation, and grow a reputation. Yes, you need a web and social media presence but keep your eye locally for now."
The only exception to the above is to now put 100% of your time AND focus within your local market. Later, after you've proven that you provide an essential service / product for others - at an acceptable price point, with SUPERB customer service, you can start to dream about expanding.
But even when you start to expand, do that with a focused plan. Don't immediately try to be an answer to the world. Nobody is.
Concentrate on continually improving the process of clients truly enjoying to use your products and services. Satisfactory growth will follow naturally. Best Wishes!