No matter where you are located, marketing your business is one of the most important things you can do to be successful in your market. In Boston, there are a few special tricks that you can use because of the vibe and energy of the city. Some of these may apply to other places as well, but I find them to be especially relevant to Boston.
- Market to college students. Boston is a huge ‘college town’ and the vast numbers of students around make them an obvious target audience for a business to reach. Depending on what the business is there can be multiple ways to use this to your advantage. Restaurants for example, can easily host a specific night or hour of the day where college students get a certain deal. This not only draws in the (often poor and looking for a deal) students for this specific timeframe- and it should always be a time that would normally be rather quiet- but it also provides a reason to pull them in when they may not have otherwise come, thereby giving them a chance to experience it and keep it in mind for next time they want to go out.
- Create a Boston-themed product. Bostonians love Boston. Boston could very well be listed among the top cities in which the citizens have the most pride for their city. Not only do people to who currently live in Boston love it, but also those who have ever lived in Boston never seem to lose their affection for it. It’s easy to create something that will resonate with nearly any possible customer by making it Boston themed. This could be a product that you would normally sell anyway, but with Boston on it in some way, a cup or shirt with your logo and something relating to Boston on it if you don’t normally sell products, a drink or dish somehow created around the name Boston or a specific Boston-relevant ingredient, really anything that can somehow relate to this wonderful city.
- Use social media. Boston is very social media savvy. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Instagram, Pinterest, or any other social media outlet, there are tons and tons of people within a four block radius on there at any given time. Use this to your advantage. Provide deals to people who check in or post photos from or of your business, or those who retweet or post about something you posted (free advertising). Or if you don’t want to discount product even posting yourself about the cool things you have going on will help to spread the word. You’d also be surprised by how many people will interact with your social media posts if you promise to repost or tag them, just because they like the recognition and the possibility of having other people driven to their page. If you really want your posts to be seen and passed around the internet, use images, make them funny, and/or go back to #2 and make it Boston-related!
- Cross-promote. There are so many amazing brands in this city that it’s always fun and pretty easy to cross promote with someone else. Find a like-minded brand that is similar in some ways to yours, either in target audience, location, principles, etc (but not product) but has a larger or different customer base than you. Team up with them for an event they are already holding, a promotion, or a special event you can plan. Both of you market it to your email lists and current customers– don’t forget social media and the good old printed flyer given out at your location. This way twice the amount of people hear about it than if you did something yourself, and you get a whole new customer base from the other brand. People who already trust the other brand will view you in a favorable light because you come recommended. A partnership like this often works extremely well between a consumer brand and a non-profit organization.