Loci 2012 – Anita Campbell

Small business expert & ex-patriate of corporate America, Anita Campbell serves as CEO of Anita Campbell Associates Ltd, a woman-owned consulting firm helping companies and organizations reach the small business market. As Publisher of several online media properties and syndicated content, Anita reaches over 1,000,000 small business owners and entrepreneurs annually.  She is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Small Business Trends. She also hosts Small Business Trends Radio, where she interviews other small business experts, publishes Selling to Small Businesses and is a key mover and shaker in the annual  SMBinfluencer Awards.

She has a very clear bead on the SMB POV.

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Here are 2 interesting gems from over at BizSugar that struck a chord with me for mainstream small businesses that need to get customers locally:

The Impact of Local Celebrity in Local Marketing:  (This one is about getting a local celebrity to review your product, since the value of user reviews has become somewhat less credible these days with astroturfing and paid review services. As media reports surfaced in the 2nd half of this year about Amazon deleting reviews because of paid review services, the value of user reviews started to decline fast in the public’s mind. User-review credibility is  not completely gone but user reviews are less likely to be believed after this year, I think.)

The Local Marketing Triangulation Strategy that Gets Results: (I like this one for the idea of “localized content” to make your marketing as relevant as possible to the local community.  This is an underutilized strategy, but one that most small businesses could adapt.)

And then there’s this one which merely reinforces the utterly confusing nature of Google’s entire local strategy these days: Google: Delete Your Google+ Local Page If…
If you read that article quickly you might assume it means every business without a local presence should delete its Google+ Page — which would be a disaster.  I think Google needs to make things easier for small businesses, and the search community needs to come out with clear and unambiguous step by step instructions — there’s been so much change in Google’s local strategy and too little clarity.

 

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
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4 thoughts on “Loci 2012 – Anita Campbell”

  1. Thanks for publishing my ramblings, Mike. I think the whole local search scene is a dynamic and exciting area. It will be interesting to see how it develops.

    – Anita

  2. Thanks for the insights. I enjoyed the article referencing “triangulation” and have worked on that for some years.

    for our various smb’s few “advertising” alternatives provide sufficient bang for the buck. Its requisite that we find those that offer reasonable returns, otherwise they are a waste. Alternatively if all the advertising sources priced at rates that worked for us…they may not stay in business very long. Its a tough nut any way you look at it.

  3. Earlpearl, I agree that for local businesses, local search provides good return for small businesses. Better than some other methods.

    For most small businesses, what you run up against is the time vs. money conundrum.

    Strategies and techniques that are free or low cost, usually involve a substantial time commitment. Examples: local search, social media, blogging. On the other hand, strategies which have an out-of-pocket expense, may not take as much time. Advertising, for example.

    It’s tough out there for SMBs, because no matter how you look at it, you are going to have to spend something, either out of pocket money, or in terms of your own or staff time to do the work or outsource it.

    Then it becomes a question of level of difficulty to execute and what you get in return. Unfortunately, it’s almost like you have to become an expert yourself or hire an expert in certain areas to even ascertain which are going to be the best for your business.

    Google is not helping. First they make AdWords nearly impossible for a novice small business owner to undertake profitably. Now they are making it harder than it needs to be on small businesses in local search. They force everyone into using Google+, and then it’s quite confusing that there are two types of business pages on Google+: local and regular. I mean, why is that necessary to have two? And why is it verboten to have a local listing if you’re not a local business but that’s your place of business? I don’t get why it needs to be so complicated. I am sure there are reasons that make perfect sense to Google, but their convoluted rules make no sense to the millions/billions of Google users.

  4. Anita:

    I agree. I run small businesses. They are small to medium in size with limited staff and limited expertise in certain areas. We have operated some for decades. Before that I was a vendor to small businesses, typically in the field of commercial real estate as a broker and typically a tenant broker. So in that context I usually dealt with a principle or senior decision maker. I did that on the retail and business (office or warehouse) side. SMB’s have limited human resources.

    Search is of course different than before there was a web, and local search is increasingly changing and subject to Google’s changes. On top of that there are a seemingly infinite variety of web sources to advertise.

    Its very daunting to the smb operator and of course in so many cases Google is the 500 lb gorilla in the building, with changing rules, always evolving algos, and a daunting set of challenges with Google Places, let alone the evolution and connections into Google +.

    I enjoyed the articles you cited, especially the one about “triangulation” which seems to involve the processes of constantly getting one’s message out on a local basis in a variety of ways.

    That is keenly insightful, IMHO, and remarkably rewarding.

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