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Why it’s important for your business to be active in the local community

Why it’s important for your business to be active in the local community

Establishing a presence in your local community is a great way to enhance your business reputation, build customer loyalty and be recognised as an employer of choice. With Twitter, Facebook and other online platforms continuing to steal attention away from traditional press and advertising, making a positive impact on the local scene isn’t just good for the sustainability of your business – it’s fast becoming a necessity.

Here are some ways you can attract attention and stand out as a force for good in your local area.

Join a local business community

Most local councils have a business development strategy, so you’re sure to find a local group where business owners in your area meet to exchange referrals and advice. This can be your chance to enter into strategic partnerships with businesses that already have a good reputation locally, and in doing so, instantly boost your brand and referrals.

Adopt local social causes

Big companies can hog much of the media’s attention when it comes to supporting social initiatives, but SMEs can make a difference too. Helping to improve the lives of people in your community doesn’t just boost your company’s reputation – it can make you feel good as well.

You could donate a slice of your profits to a local charity, start a recycling program or volunteer with a group such as Crime Stoppers. Can you donate something other than time or money? If you run a bus charter company, for example, you could offer free rides to the shops for seniors and the disabled. And don’t forget to contact the local media for extra exposure.

Special events also count. Whether you’re hosting a fundraiser to help bushfire victims or sponsoring a local sporting club, there are many ways to lend a hand to locals while gaining positive exposure for your business.

Become a trusted authority

Whether you’re a lawyer or restaurant chef, proving that you know your stuff will help bring customers to your door. There are lots of ways you can do this, including workshops, free seminars or a Q&A on a local radio station. If you’re an accountant, you could build engagement by writing a blog that provides free financial tips for local businesses. Social media is a great platform for getting involved in local issues and showing followers that you’re interested in more than just selling to them.

Community involvement is an extremely effective reputation-management activity that offers a win-win outcome for everyone involved. It’s also one of the cheapest and most powerful marketing strategies available.

Getting involved in your local community could be a great way for your business to rebuild trust if it has lapsed. Find out other ways to regain consumer trust.

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