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Social media activity has essential benefits for local businesses that include strengthening your brand and raising your SEO ranking. In many instances, it may be hard to link social media involvement to immediate sales, but growing your online presence will certainly make more people know about your business. They are bound to come your way as soon as the need for your service or product arises.

Here are 10 tips so your local biz can reap the benefits of social media:

  1. First make sure that people on Facebook can “check-in” to your business when they drop by. This is especially popular for eating establishments and bars. You want your check-in linked to a Facebook page.
  2. Register your biz with Foursquare as well because they now give you access to the names of all of the people who checked in to your business so you can study their behavior as a customer and target them more directly.
  3. Get ready for the all new Facebook graph search which allows people to find local businesses according to the likes of its fans. This feature is currently available a limited number of accounts, but it’s coming our way soon!
  4. Give your business a voice by opening a Twitter account. Tweet about local events and about customers that drop by. Also ask (give incentive to do so) customers to tweet about you or post a status update about  you on Facebook, that way their friends become your audience too.
  5. Enhance your LinkedIn presence– LinkedIn profiles rank highest in Google searches of all the social media, higher than FB even. So get your profile listed there if you haven’t already, especially if you are a professional who owns a local business. Keep your profile updated and join groups that deal with your industry and/or location.
  6. YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine so create and upload any type of compelling, hilarious, or smart tutorial videos, special event coverage, creative employee features, etc. Ask your customers to upload their videos to your YouTube channel and offer rewards.
  7. List your business at Yelp, which combines local-based reviews with great social features. People go on Yelp to see what others are saying about stores, venues, public spaces, dentists and so much more. You need to keep track of the Yelp conversation about your business and make sure future customers like what they read.
  8. Organize regular meetups, workshops and other informal local gatherings that are related to your business. Promote these events on Facebook, Eventbrite, Meetup.com, SkillShare and other platforms. People will be happy to attend if they feel like they get an added value – information, access, discounts or networking.
  9. Image is everything! Attach photos wherever you can in your tweets, Facebook updates and blog posts. Take snapshots of everything that you associate with your brand and upload them to your sites. Snap photos of your customers/staff and post them on Instagram. Don’t forget to tag the people in the photo, so they have a good reason to share it too.
  10. Blog weekly about your local business. Not about the business itself, but about the experiences and events, news and interesting information surrounding your niche. Focus on rich content and optimizing tags and titles in each post for search engines. Linking in and out of your blog builds both direct and indirect traffic to your business.
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Written by Guest Post