Small business success is all about building strong relationships with your customers. When you are a local business, it is critical to have meaningful interactions with the community.

No matter what type of good or service you provide, there are unique ways to position your brand through local small business community events. We dive into the best strategies and community involvement ideas to strengthen brand reputation, build trust with the community, and drive more sales to your business.

Why Is It a Good Idea for a Business to Be Involved in Local Events?

Most local businesses thrive on attention. Getting your business involved in the community allows you to stay at the forefront of your customers’ minds. Your ideal customer will be attending these community activities, so your business should play a role in some way.

Participating in local small business events is also excellent for brand reputation. When your company engages in a local activity, it shows that you care about giving back to the community. As community members see your company enjoying local events, they are more likely to return the favor.

Local events also act as community outreach programs for companies to see how relationships build opportunity with other small businesses in the community. Meeting other business owners at local business events could lead to mutually beneficial partnerships. Maybe the other business’ customers could get value from your services and vice versa.

How to Promote Your Business at Community Events

As you promote your community events for businesses, you must bring a “value-first” approach. You should provide as much as you can to your customers or prospects before they give you any business.

Give Away Free Handouts

Promotional handouts and freebies are a great place to start. Place your logo on a small gift for the event attendees to take home. Not only do these people receive a cool item, but your logo is now inside that person’s home. Every time they pick up the item, your logo reminds them about their interaction with you at the event. Here are a few freebie ideas for you to use at the next event:

  • Key chains
  • Pop sockets for phone cases
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Chapstick
  • Reusable water bottles
  • Bags

Make Your Brand Stand Out

Presentation is another critical factor in promoting your business at community events. There will be a lot of vendors, businesses, and organizations in attendance, which is why you need to differentiate your brand. Make sure your sign for your booth or area is large, clear, and eye-catching. It is also critical to creatively place your logo in multiple areas of your booth so people can see.

Come in With a Plan

As the community event approaches, it is critical to research the logistics, attendees, and size. Your team should have a clear idea of the target audience and how your company fits into the big picture. Contact the event planners and organizers to understand how large your space is. That way, you can plan on the number of people and resources you will bring.

Ways to Get Involved in Your Local SMB Community

Why is it a good idea for a business to be involved in local events? Getting involved in the local community is critical to your long-term business growth. Below are some great ways to build trust with the community and elevate brand awareness.

Schedule a Workshop

If your business specializes in something, you should spread the knowledge to other members of the community. Whether it is cooking, personal finance, or fitness, you can organize a free class for local citizens. Making it free will establish trust with people and incentivize them to visit your business in the future.

Host a Contest

People love free giveaways, which is why a contest or competition can boost engagement within the local community. If you are a service or product business, you can award the winner one free session or item. For in-person community events, you can do a drawing or raffle to determine the winner. You could also take the contest to social media to grow your online community.

Partner with a Charity

Your community most likely has a lot of organizations looking to impact the community. They could always use more helping hands, and that is where your business comes into play. As you decide on the right charity to partner with, look for organizations that share your morals and values. Collaborate on a fundraising event, picnic, or other outdoor activity.

Why Do Some Businesses Sponsor Local Events?

Why do some businesses sponsor local events? There are many reasons why sponsoring a local event can improve your relationship with the community. When you build a charitable reputation within the community, you are more likely to gain long-term customers. Below are some other reasons why sponsoring local events can be beneficial.

Brand Positioning

When your business sponsors an event, it broadcasts your logo everywhere. For bigger audiences who do not know about your company yet, this is an effective tool. Depending on the size of the event, it will get a lot of social media, press, and overall mentions. Your company can also put your logo on giveaways, signs, and other promotional marketing materials for the event.

Lead Generation

Sponsoring an event also opens the opportunity to gain more leads. If you do a raffle, you can collect email addresses and phone numbers. The leads are also much more qualified because you intimately interacted with these people throughout the event.

Brand Reputation

Your business will not win over customers through flashy advertising about your product. However, you can genuinely influence your community by the way you make them feel. Sponsoring an event sends the message that your company cares about the community. It shows that you are invested in the community for the long run.

Local Events to Promote Your Business 2022

Looking for an excellent place to start promoting your business at local events? Below are some of the most influential events to build relationships with the community that will help you understand why establishing a network of peers is important:

  • Volunteer events
  • Workshops and seminars
  • Chamber of commerce networking events
  • Service or product sample events
  • Contests
  • Local festivals and fairs
  • Events that share the core values behind your business

About the Author, James Webster

James Webster, founder and Executive Chairman of ROK Financial has almost two decades of experience within the financial services industry. His passion for helping small business owners and his innovative way of thinking, has allowed him to run multiple successful businesses including National Business Capital & Services. Under the National name, the team was able to help secure over $1 Billion in financing for small businesses nationwide.