At this point, most local business owners know that they need to advertise online to stay competitive in the current market.
Digital marketing is more critical now than it’s ever been, and its importance is only growing.
But there’s one crucial aspect of digital marketing that many people are leaving out.
While online marketing might be vital, the vast majority of spending still happens offline.
In fact, only about 4% of consumer spending happens directly on the web, which means much of your marketing focus should be on getting local customers through your doors.
1The benefits of local advertising, a problem, and the solution
To start, let’s go a bit deeper into what makes local digital advertising great.
- 97% of search engine users have used local searches to find businesses, 29% of which do so every week.
- 50% of local searchers visit a store within the same day.
- And brands are catching on to this. In 2018 alone, 49.5 billion USD was spent on digital advertising, 63% of which was on mobile platforms.
.From these stats, we can gather two things:
- Local advertising, specifically on mobile, has the potential for a massive ROI since people are using their phones to find new businesses all the time.
- But on the downside, tons of businesses are already on the bandwagon, so there’s lots of competition.
Since so many companies are starting to implement local search advertising, consumers are beginning to get used to all of the marketing messages they send out.
Desensitized consumers mean your ads won’t run as effectively unless you’ve got a way to differentiate yourself.
So you’ll need a way to get in front of local searchers, but you’ve got to do it in a way that most of your competitors aren’t already using so you can stand out.
This is where addressable geofencing comes into the digital advertising ring.
While most businesses are already focused on local search advertising, you can supplement your marketing strategy with an advanced audience targeting strategy.
2Using addressable geofencing to stand out against the crowd
First, there’s one question we should address:
What is addressable geofencing?
Geofencing is the process of setting up geographical boundaries (or “fences”) around a particular area.
When someone’s mobile device passes through this boundary, they get a message. Typically, this is in the form of a push notification.
This means you can send your ads out to people traveling through highly-specific locations.
For instance, you could set up a geofence to send out push notifications whenever someone walks down your street.
Addressable geofencing refers to setting up geofences around addresses. Another example of a way advertisers could take advantage of this technique is by setting up a geofence to send push notifications to people who walk into a specific store.
And many of the big brands are using it to significant effect.
One of those big brands happens to be Chipotle, here’s how they’re using addressable geofencing to give themselves the edge over their competition:
3Chipotle using addressable geofencing to target Cafe Rio’s customers.
With geofencing, your fences don’t have to only exist around your store’s location; you could set a geofence almost anywhere.
One subtle way you can use geofences to target competitor’s customers is to set fences around competitor locations.
Here’s a personal story of a time I was recently targeted with this advanced targeting method:
This is the push notification ad my smartphone received after walking into one of Chipotle’s top competitors, Cafe Rio:
I wasn’t even in the restaurant for 2 minutes when Chipotle sent me an offer for free delivery on any order.
The fact that I got this after walking into a Chipotle competitor probably isn’t a coincidence. They likely have geofences set up around plenty of competitor locations for this exact reason.
Let’s use me as an example of why geofence ads like this are so powerful:
- I’m a potential customer who’s already interested in the type of food Chipotle offers (hence why I was at Cafe Rio). So Chipotle isn’t wasting advertising budget on someone who has no interest in Mexican-style food.
- Second, I was using my phone (as most consumers are), which let Chipotle get their ad right in front of me at just the right time. This is the whole reason that local advertising is so powerful in the first place, but taken up another notch.
- Third, Chipotle was able to offer me a deal that was better than Cafe Rio’s offer, only further enticing me to pick Chipotle over them.
The Bottom Line
This is just one of the many ways a brand could use geofencing for local advertising, the tip of the geofencing iceberg if you will.
Geofencing has a vast amount of applications in the marketing world, and the great thing about it is that most brands haven’t caught on yet. Now is the perfect time to get ahead of the curve.
So get out there, start marketing your business, and take the marketing battle to your competitors’ doorsteps.
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