Every brick and mortar boutique needs a digital presence as well. Here’s how to expand your customer base and boost your role in the community by taking your marketing online.
Cover image via Ollyy.
If you own or work for a small fashion boutique that has a local presence, marketing is a big piece of the puzzle when it comes to building a successful future. Even though you have a brick and mortar business that’s known in the community, you should still invest in an online presence. Not only will a digital presence expand your reach beyond the community, it will also strengthen your bond with existing customers.
Online marketing combined with smart traditional methods could be the key to growing your boutique. Here are a few tips for getting started online.
1. Get on Pinterest
Chances are that many of your customers and potential customers are on Pinterest. The platform’s simplicity and image-friendly layout makes it an ideal way to showcase what your boutique has to offer. Make sure you pin links to the product page in your online store, or to a blog article that mentions the pieces. Speaking of…
2. Start a Blog
A blog is a simple way to characterize your business, share news and updates, and spotlight some of your best products. Create pieces about trending fashion that feature strong photographs, or write about ways to style some of the season’s hottest pieces. Your content is up to you, but use it as an opportunity to subtly push your products and brand.
Do remember that in-your-face marketing tends to turn people off, so make your content informative, educational, and helpful instead of pushing a hard sell. Establish your shop as a trusted source of information about style and fashion, and customers will come on their own.
3. Create Business Cards that Stand Out
A dynamic business card is a great way to make you and your business memorable. Don’t settle for a template business card design that lists your shop name and contact information in a boring manner. Check out some of the designs on Pinterest to see how other fashion brands have made their cards stand out.
Try Shutterstock Editor to design your own business card. Use high-quality imagery and typography to lay out the card. If you want to be noticed, take liberties with the size and color scheme, and use high-quality paper.
4. Show Community Involvement
People love a business that is engaged with the community, and since your business has a local focus, this move is even more critical. To amplify your role in the community, consider a few of these tactics:
- Hold fundraisers or participate in them.
- Donate services, products, or a percentage of sales to a local charity.
- Sponsor a sports team.
- Set up a booth at community and regional fairs/events.
There’s no one way to get involved. For example, if you want to donate your services, your boutique could develop a program to assist low-income women with the job interview process by donating business suits every month. If you want to try something else, you could hold workshops on entrepreneurship instead.
5. Be Smart with Online Marketing
It usually isn’t enough to set up a page for your business on Facebook and post occasional updates. Things you can do to increase your impact on Facebook include the following:
- Running targeted ad campaigns to reach people in your desired geographical location and income range.
- Posting beautiful cover photos and regular posts that feature your products in rich color.
- Making videos that show what your store is all about.
It’s easy to make mistakes in each of these categories. For instance, many businesses don’t use correctly sized ad photos or cover photos, so those images get cropped or distorted. It goes without saying that to look like a professional, competent business, your Facebook design should be flawless.
One way around this problem of sizing is to use tools such as Shutterstock Editor to ensure optimal crops. In fact, the program has preset sizes for Facebook covers, Facebook posts, Pinterest posts, Twitter posts, Instagram posts, and much more.
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