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If there’s a solid way small businesses can become successful and maintain visibility, the first step is connecting with locals. It doesn’t matter what service or product is being offered, entrepreneurial experts believe that getting out into one’s town or city and networking regularly can reap incredible benefits, cement a fine reputation, and build a strong customer base.

Meet and greet

Small businesses can create a social buzz by immersing into a community’s local fabric. There are parades, fairs, fundraisers, and all kinds of opportunities to know one’s town or city and observe residents’ habits and interests. Shaking hands and meeting folks can go a long way in developing good customer rapport.

Give some time

Volunteering is another fine example of connecting with the locals and putting a human face to a company’s image. It can be an individual endeavor or a business can arrange a team effort to help an organization in need.

Volunteering can create positive brand exposure.

Get on “board”

Joining a community board is another method for building good standing in one’s city or town. Getting involved with a downtown council or organization can help broaden a small business connection. Your business background could be an asset to helping other small local companies get off the ground.

Forging business friendships

Supporting nearby local businesses is also an asset. Getting to know local business owners can be a plus and could lead to partnerships and deals that benefit each party involved.

It never hurts to work together to promote all the local companies.

Public event space

Opening your company doors to the public is a great way to connect with the locals. During after-business hours, a company could hold a networking session.

A small business could also offer room to local professionals who lack business space.

Cool giveaways

People love getting great deals or free stuff and when a company rewards its loyal base with some nice extras, customers excitedly respond.

Back team organizations

Sponsoring an individual or a team can yield amazing business exposure. For example, backing a high school sports team is a wonderful way to engage with the community and build a powerful name in town.