As technology changes the way buyers find products and services, having an optimized local marketing strategy helps consumers to discover your nearby business, allowing you to thrive in those areas. Used effectively, local marketing can also become a key differentiator from nearby competition and help you engage with local consumers on a more personalized level.
Location-based queries, like Google searches including the phrase ‘near me’, have increased by 3400% since 2011. With an increasing number of consumers using digital means to find local providers, national marketers must also have a strong local presence. Unfortunately, leveraging local marketing can prove difficult for national brands where a gap between headquarters and local or franchise locations exists.
Executive marketing teams at the national level don’t always have the detailed insights into trends and events as local marketers within the area. The same goes for local marketing managers who know what campaigns are effective in their region but may not have the skills or resources to create a strong local presence.
Having an effective local marketing strategy can bridge the gap between corporate and local marketing teams and streamline local efforts.
Here are five key tips for optimizing your local marketing strategy:
1. Know Your Audience
Understanding the needs and preferences of your community is vital to creating a connection with customers. Marketing managers can provide detailed information and local insights on consumer personas and local events within their region.
By sponsoring trade shows, charities, pop-up events and other local initiatives to interact with people in the community, local businesses can strengthen relationships and introduce themselves to a wider audience.
2. Optimize for Mobile
A survey from Google found that 94% of respondents use a smartphone to search for local information; and that local searches make up almost 25% of all smartphone searches. To take advantage of these insights, make sure localized landing pages are optimized for mobile, allowing those in your community to easily find you.
3. Localize Social Media
Social media is a great channel to build relations with consumers, but a sole corporate presence may not be enough. To improve your social media strategy, creating local social accounts can further build trust and personal connections with local users.
To maximize the impact of localized social media, consider:
• Using locally trending hashtags
• Creating a Facebook group for local customers or related businesses
• Creating regionally-relevant contests, promotions, and surveys
• Connecting with local influencers to promote products and services
4. Maximize SEO
A recent study by Hubspot found that 87% of smartphone owners use a search engine daily and that 78% of local searches result in an offline sale, most within 5 hours of search.
In order to maximize the SEO standing of a local business and improve sales and revenues, it’s important to ensure that website titles and meta description tags displayed on search engines, like Google, are accurate and optimized.
In addition, entering your business information on relevant online directories and social channels, like Yelp or LinkedIn, can further aid your business in reaching a wider net of viewers.
5. Manage Reviews
Positive online reviews are important to both customers and businesses. According to a recent consumer survey, 84% of respondents said they trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation and are likely to spend 31% more on a business with excellent ratings.
If you’re aware of a customer that has had a good experience with your brand, don’t be afraid to ask for a review! You might be surprised by the insights you can pull from reading a customer’s true feelings on an experience with your company. Utilize those insights to further improve the way you do business.
By building a strategic local marketing plan, your business can better connect with local audiences and reinforce positive customer experiences in meaningful ways. It takes some effort to bridge the gap from headquarters to local markets, but digital platforms, like CampaignDrive, can streamline marketing and design efforts across locations.
CampaignDrive by Pica9 is a cloud-based platform that connects national and local marketing and design teams for strategic collaboration and creation of on-brand materials.
By having all branded assets accessible in one place, while also allowing for personalization and customization, CampaignDrive streamlines the digital asset production process, reduces the number of one-off requests between local marketing and corporate marketing teams, and improves customer experience by ensuring branding remains consistent at every location.
Learn more about powering your local marketing strategy with CampaignDrive and request a free demonstration today.