‘Restaurant near me’
‘Furniture store near me’
‘Bike shop near me’
Search phrases that include ‘near me’ have gone up exponentially over the past few years, seeing 900% growth from 2013 to 2017. But even now, most searchers expect Google to know their location to provide the best results, especially those on their phones with location tracking enabled. What does this all mean for your brand’s marketing strategy? It means you need a hyper-local marketing strategy.
What is a hyper-local marketing strategy?
The truth is, marketing to prospective customers in states or cities is no longer enough; you need to reach them exactly where they are in real time. That’s what hyper-local marketing allows you to do. Hyper-local marketing lets you target consumers in precise locations — sometimes even within a block’s radius. From there, you can drive local traffic to your brand’s retailers and win the business of ‘near me’ searchers.
How is this different from niche marketing? Niche marketing takes an even deeper dive and targets consumers who can particularly benefit from a very specific product, like marketing a vegan restaurant to those who are vegan. Hyper-local marketing, on the other hand, is recognizing consumers who are within a specific radius of your retailers and capturing their attention the moment — or even before — they make a search that’s relevant to your brand or products.
To effectively implement a hyper-local marketing strategy for your brand, there are three crucial elements you need to be aware of.
Element 1: Hyper-Local Targeted Ads
When it comes to paid ad strategies, hyper-local is the way to go. Platforms like Google, Facebook, and Instagram let you serve ads to target audiences in specific areas — narrowing locations down to not just zip codes but as little as a one mile radius. That, combined with other demographic information like age, gender, interests, and connections, allows you to serve up highly effective ads that drive customers to your brand’s local retailers.
Scaling ads across your retailers can pose a challenge; if you’re running campaigns in a handful of specific markets, setting up campaigns for each geographic area may be feasible for your marketing team. If you have a network of 10’s, 100’s, or 1000’s of retailers, look for solutions that scale your paid efforts across a wide swath of locations without having to manually set up campaigns for each of your retailer locations. Worth noting here, there are software solutions that help you scale your paid efforts; in fact, ThumbStopper has a solution for this through Brand Amplifier™, which scales local social advertising across an entire retail network.
Pro tip: If you want to narrow your target audience even further, consider a tactic called geofencing. It lets you set a specific parameter and serve ads to mobile users who enter that area during particular times.
Element 2: Location-Based Landing Pages
For national brands, generating location-specific content to boost local visibility isn’t always the best (or manageable) tactic, especially if you work with multiple retailers. Our solution? Create location-based landing pages on your website. Be sure to include local information, metadata, and keywords about your brand and the location’s nearby retailer.
That way, when someone searches for your products in an area where you work with a retailer, they’ll be able to find the landing page even if it doesn’t pop up (yet) on a Google Maps result. This can also eliminate frustration if your local retailers do not have the most up-to-date local listings.
While there are software options to scale your local landing page efforts by utilizing dynamic text like Unbounce and Clickfunnels, a word of caution here: Google’s Guidelines around what are called “doorway pages” should be kept in mind.
Doorways are sites or pages created to rank highly for specific search queries. They are bad for users because they can lead to multiple similar pages in user search results, where each result ends up taking the user to essentially the same destination. They can also lead users to intermediate pages that are not as useful as the final destination. Here are some examples of doorways:
- Having multiple domain names or pages targeted at specific regions or cities that funnel users to one page
- Pages generated to funnel visitors into the actual usable or relevant portion of your site(s)
- Substantially similar pages that are closer to search results than a clearly defined, browseable hierarchy
So remember when creating your location-specific pages to include a local information that is relevant to the geographic region and ensure content is unique enough to warrant a page of its own.
Element 3: Strong Hyper-Local Social Media Presence
It’s no secret that social media is a must-have for any marketing strategy, and it can be even more effective at a hyper-local level. 76% of consumers have purchased something they saw on social media — 21% buy it in a physical store. Wouldn’t it be nice if they knew exactly where their local store is? With social platforms like Facebook becoming increasingly like search engines, ensuring your brand has a strong local presence will increase awareness and traffic for your local retailers. In fact, Facebook has an eerily similar “local three pack” that shows for location-based searches on its platform, so putting the same efforts towards your retailers’ social presence as you do for your retailers’ websites is becoming more and more important.
With ThumbStopper’s Brand Manager™ tool, your brand can house all your localized digital assets in one place and even manage the distribution of it — including the timing, audience, location, and more. Then, all of that unique, localized content is posted automatically to your retailers’ feeds without them even lifting a finger. As a result, your brand gets more visibility on a local level. Win-win-win.
Get Hyper-Local with ThumbStopper
While hyper-local marketing may seem like you’re narrowing your potential reach, the goal is to target the right type of customer at the right time. With ThumbStopper’s turnkey solution, you can elevate your marketing strategies to do just that.
Ready to get started? Schedule a 15-minute brand assessment to learn how ThumbStopper can amplify your brand.