It is incredible how much the landscape of getting the word out about your business has changed since the Internet came on the scene. Before that, the phone made a huge impact on the way businesses reached out and let their potential customers know about the services or products they offer.

Promoting and educating online is a huge part of the way we communicate with our clients and potential clients and we do the majority of our work over the phone and via email. So many other entrepreneurs and business owners are also relying on these flexible and far-reaching tools to reach their audience.

That's why it's so easy to forget about those potential clients who are in your own backyard. We can get so busy trying to get our message out on the internet or via emails and phone calls, we forget that one of our most valuable assets is right here, waiting and willing to be of service - our physical presence!

It is essential to have room in your marketing plan to get yourself out in front of other people - specifically your ideal client - but also those who will refer you to your ideal client.

Here are 10 great ideas to get you out and helping people right in your community:

1) Find out where your ideal client hangs out - It is essential that you know who your ideal client is and know as much as possible about them, i.e., where do they go for fun, to learn, to connect with each other, to shop. If you don't know, ask some of your past or current clients who fit the description of your ideal client - they are a great resource for you!

2) BNI (Business Networking International) or other referral networking groups - You can find local BNI's in your area by searching for "BNI" and the name of your city. Depending on where you live there are usually several options. There are fees to join and it is important to visit several to find one that is a good fit for you. The purpose of the BNI is to network, so the mission for attending is nice and focused - helping to grow each other's businesses! There are more and more groups splintering off from the traditional BNI, so you can also do a "Google" search for "networking" and the name of your city or state.

3) Chamber of Commerce - Most local chambers of commerce host regular networking events, either after hours get togethers or morning coffee/breakfast gatherings. You can usually find ample information on your local chamber's website. They normally have a list of events that are available to members and nonmembers.

4) Meetup.com - Check out meetup.com and search for meetups that your ideal client may be interested in. For example, we often search for spiritual and healing gatherings. If you are in your perfect niche, you will be excited to investigate these particular events - if not, you may want to take a look at who you are focusing on to serve. There are also often networking/marketing meet up lists too, so check those out as well. And if you don't see one you like, you can create your own and invite others to join you. That's what we did when we created our "Brewin' Up Business" coffee hour and it has been very successful and fun!

5) Speak Out! - And/or find places you can hold a demonstration - this may take a little leg work, but find out where your ideal client's gather - again you can use that wonderful "Google" search for organizations, associations, meetings and social clubs where your ideal client may belong. Make a list and start making calls and sending emails.

6) Workshops and seminars - These don't have to be huge productions. You can create workshops anywhere from a couple of hours to a few days. Search out places that typically put on a variety of workshops or that put on workshops that speak specifically to your ideal client. Or, you can rent space at your local community center or hotel conference room. We have a wonderful friend who has offered an evening time in her storefront that she uses during the day. Be creative and create partnerships to make it more fun!

7) Coffee dates - Start setting up coffee dates with people who may be able to refer you to your ideal client or have ideas about how to reach them. For example, we met with the leader of our Spiritual Center and she was a fount of information and great ideas. This is a great opportunity to build trust and to create partnerships that can benefit everyone!

8) Calendar of Events in local newspaper or local info sites - Check out the calendar of events in your local area. Get out there socially and be seen in your community. Support other businesses in their activities. Attend local celebrations and events. It's all about relationships and creating support and partnership. It is also a great place for you to post any of your workshops, classes or public appearances.

9) Local Trade Shows, Fairs or Festivals - This is always a great way for people to "see you in action". You can either apply to be a speaker if that is appropriate or rent some booth space. If your service is something you can offer in a brief demo session, you can help people have a better understanding about how you can help them and start becoming more known for what you do in your area.

10) Fundraisers and silent auction events - Silent auctions can be a great place to support your community as well as gain exposure for yourself and your services. You can offer a gift certificate or a free product or even a special package that you put together for that event. Again, be creative, give LOTS of value and create something that will stand out from the other entries.

Those are just a few of the ideas you can use to get yourself out in your community in a big way. The beautiful thing about all of these approaches is that they create a wonderful flow of energy as you step out and share yourself with the people of your local community.

Remember, they share your environment, your community and often your experience. And when you step out, they get the opportunity to see you in action, get a sense of what you are all about and have an authentic, in person experience of you and with you. Is there any better way for us all to connect?

Your Authentic Assignment

We invite you to pick at least one of the above "local outreach" ideas that you are not currently doing, and take action on it this week - just see how it works. Choose something that sounds fun and would also give you a good return on your time and effort. Think about how you can combine getting out and reaching people with offering help and support to those you live, shop, eat, play and work with. Don't spend too much time planning - just get out there and connect with your community!

Author's Bio: 

We would like to invite you to visit www.AuthenticMarketingMadeEasy.com for free tips, tools, articles and to download your F.R.E.E. Special Report: "The 3 Keys to Increasing your Profits While Staying Aligned with Your Passion and Purpose". For our daily meditation, please visit www.KnowTruthLiveTruth.com, home of Today's Truth.

Putting into action the very system and principles they teach, Paige Stapleton and Brian Stark left careers that were leaving them feeling small and unfulfilled and followed their bliss! Now, as founders of Authentic Marketing Made Easy™, and The Authentic Marketing System™, they have created a life they love helping healers, practitioners, coaches and other small business owners learn the simple and holistic way to market and grow their service-based businesses, so they can attract more clients and make more money, while staying in integrity with their passion and purpose.