Location Tools For Small Business

By Room 214     |     January 23, 2013

Next Thursday Jan. 31st, at 11:00am MST, we’re throwing a Location Tools For Small Business Twitter Party. Follow @Room_214 on Twitter and watch the #locationchat hashtag to get in on the action.

Last week, Facebook announce an expansion of it’s search offering called Graph Search, as well as an update to their location-based tool Nearby. While both of these announcements have a lot of implications for community managers for big brands, I couldn’t help but think that small businesses need to be all over this.

In the near future, your customers will be using Facebook graph search to find restaurants or stores their “friends have been to.” This is a vastly different search than a Google query for “stores in “Denver.” It’s different because in order to optimize your Facebook location pages to show up on Facebook Graph searches you need your customers to do things like check-in, Like your page and write Facebook reviews.

If the little guys want to compete, you better start pushing your customers to interact with your location pages. Do you have errant location pages on Facebook existing without branding, or management? You do, and you haven’t even claimed them!? If that sounds familiar let me highly recommend that you read into Facebook Parent-Child linking so you can claim your location pages on Facebook and associate them with your main brand page.

Of course, Facebook is only the tip of the iceberg in the local search game. At a bare minimum you should claim and optimize your listings on Yelp, Foursquare, Google Places (Google+ Local) and Facebook. Make sure all of the information is correct. Then start testing deals and offers. Need more info? Check out these mobile marketing tips for small businesses.

If you have five or more locations, this can be a pretty arduous task. You can reach out to a digital marketing company for help.

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