Surviving the Digital Storm

The retail landscape looks a lot different today than it did even a few years ago. Now, many well-established businesses that dominated their markets for years are suddenly competing with new startups and national big box retailers for the same base of customers. What does that mean for the small business owner? It means that everyone is in the game because you left the door open for them.

A colleague of mine has owned and operated a pizzeria for 46 years in the same location. For decades he ran an extremely successful shop and only had a handful of nearby competitors to keep an eye on. It worked for years and word-of-mouth advertising was all he really needed to compete; his pizza and the atmosphere was all the marketing he needed. Or so he thought.

Now in the digital age, competitors are popping up left and right and instead of fighting for his piece of the market share with two or three competitors, my colleague is now one of a dozen pizza places in his area. His competitors saw their opportunity and took advantage.

When I ran my shop at Beneva, I was always concerned about competition and market share and the last thing I wanted to do was let a competitor get a foothold in my territory. I knew that my reputation was strong, but I also knew that reputation alone isn’t enough when you have aggressive competitors.

The Digital Difference

With all the new pizza shops opening in the area, my colleague was feeling the squeeze, but was still enjoying the word-of-mouth traffic to stay competitive. That all changed several months ago when another new shop opened down the street and unleased a digital storm!

The new shop wasn’t even open yet, they hadn’t served a single pie, but everywhere you turned, there they were. They were on Facebook, on Twitter, on Instagram; posting pictures and creating metrics that they knew how to measure. My colleague relied on his reputation to market his business, but his competitors relied on statistics – the fight was nowhere close to fair.

Fortunately, my colleague was determined to fight back and save his business, so he called Bloomerang and we went to work.

The first thing we did was check every online listing he had to make sure everything was consistent which goes a long way in increasing your Google ranking. We then helped him build a solid social media foundation that he could use to interact with customers.

From there we helped build his website with reciprocal links to social media accounts and a strong blog that he can utilize to share specials and events with customers and potential customers. Next, we started featuring pay-per-click ads for his shop that retargeted specific demographics of customers and finally, we surveyed current and past customers to learn as much as we can about the business from their point of view and reconciled all the data to form a long-term marketing plan that will allow him to regain the market share that was lost to the new competitors.

Protect yourself from the storm that surrounds you because it’s happening and it’s coming towards you in a digital format. Understanding that is the key to conquering it and protecting yourself from your competition taking over your area and your space.

Protect your backyard, put up that fence today! Call us at Bloomerang (941) 806-1911 – the advice is free! How can Bloomerang help your business bloom? Let us know - we’d love to hear from you! Feel free to respond in the comments or email us at