If you’re looking to engage with a local audience and get more business closer to home, check out Nextdoor and Alignable. They’re both social media marketing platforms that focus on connecting local communities and can help small business owners gain visibility, build brand awareness, and attract a steady stream of customers or partners.

So, which is the better marketing tool?

Nextdoor vs. Alignable Brands

Nextdoor calls itself “the neighborhood network.” The website says neighbors can use Nextdoor to “receive trusted information, give and get help, and build real-world connections with those nearby.” It brands itself as a kind and neighborly network that brings people together and promotes more caring and supportive communities.

Alignable, on the other hand, focuses on B2B relationships. Its tagline is “the Small Business Referral Network.” It helps business owners connect with each other, ask and answer business-related questions, make and receive referrals, find leads and prospects, and increase visibility for your business.

While Nextdoor is all about connecting neighbors and local communities, Alignable has a more professional feel, connecting business owners to business owners. It’s similar to LinkedIn, with a more local flavor.

Nextdoor vs. Alignable Platforms

Nextdoor and Alignable share similar platforms and sign-in requirements. Both ask for your address when you sign up and automatically place you in an online community. There’s a main feed or forum where you can post content and see what others in your community have shared. You also have an opportunity to follow or connect with specific people, send direct or private messages, and join groups based on your interests.

Nextdoor makes it easy to connect with your community and stay up to date with what’s going in your area, with chatter about town hall, suggestions for fun events, as well as information you need to know. It’s so community-based that it was considered a top social media platform during the pandemic, and if you ever lost your pet iguana, more than one person would be on the lookout!

The Business section is another popular feature, where you can search for local businesses as well as promote your company’s products and services. Plus, Local Deals score high. That’s where you share special offers and promotions, and drive traffic to your location. As you might imagine, there’s also a ‘pay to play’ option, to buy a Neighborhood Sponsorship, to post ads or other content.

Alignable has similar features. There’s a directory to search for local businesses, a calendar to post upcoming events, and a services area to promote just that, products and services. You’re also able to make recommendations and referrals for other businesses, and they can do the same for you. This B2B Circle of Karma helps build your profile, increase your page’s visibility, and make friends.

Another thumbs up for Alignable is the ability to subscribe to your community’s local newsletter and advertise in it. If you opt for the ‘pay to play’ or premium version, you get to look behind the scenes to see who’s checking you out. In that sense, you’re capturing leads. 

Which is better for your business?

Both Nextdoor and Alignable have benefits, depending on your specific marketing goals. Nextdoor is hyperlocal and helps you connect with your community on a more personal level, to neighbors, organizations, and businesses. Alignable offers local social networking, but its main focus is building B2B relationships. Both will help build name recognition, promote your expertise through storytelling (aka your content), and connect you with people who want to know more about you and how you can help them. 

Before you dive in, be clear on who your target market is. Are most of your clients everyday people in your community or other small business owners? Would your neighbors be interested in your services, or would it make more sense (and be more profitable) to engage with local professionals who can refer you time and time again?

As a marketer in any stage in the game, look at where you are in your business and where you want to go – and assess the products and services you offer. If you run a home daycare or a lawn-cutting service, Nextdoor might be the perfect fit. If you mostly work with other businesses and have national presence, Alignable may be your better option. 

There’s only so much time, running a business, prospecting for new business, and growing your business. Marketing is important and, more so, strategic marketing – to save time, money, and resources. Want to test drive Nextdoor or Alignable? Start for free before moving to fee.

Have a local business and want to learn more? Check out my blog, How to Market Your Business on Nextdoor.

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