Hyperlocality is a fairly new term in marketing. How did you come to the decision to deal with this topic?
I have been working in online marketing since 1999 and have always dealt a lot with lead generation and affiliate marketing . It was always about selling a product. Over the years I’ve noticed that the companies we work for are particularly local in search of leads. For example insurance companies , banks or retail companies. Statements like the following were typical: “Customers come to us and take a look, but don’t end up buying. Or they don’t come by at all, they only shop online.” That was the point where I started thinking about how to solve this problem. In 2011 I founded a small performance agency, Adxmedia, which dealt with such local leads and foot traffic. At the end of 2016, Adxmedia was bought by the DAC Group, which specializes in local marketing. That was also the reason why we joined the DAC Group. The DAC Group is dealing with this completely new area, which has not existed in Germany before. But we notice that companies are very interested and that there is potential. However, hardly anyone knows exactly what is actually happening.
And what exactly is hyperlocal marketing?
Hyperlocal marketing means drawing attention to your product at a specific place and time and offering it to the customer. Sort of like a barker at the weekly market, only hyperlocal marketing is much more complex. It’s not about offering a potential customer his product in the right place, but rather the customer journey is included here and thus: At what time do I offer my product to the potential customer and in what decision-making phase is he then? When time, place and personal sensitivities are combined, then we are talking about hyperlocal marketing.
It is not about a specific channel, but about the interaction of data, the most diverse marketing channels as well as offline channels and movement profiles. And that requires a strategy. Those who invest here have the chance to reach very qualified clientele. What does not just buy once, but is loyal to the brand or the company.
For whom is hyperlocal marketing relevant?
It is relevant for all companies with a local sales organization. In other words, manufacturers with their own shops – or sales organizations that simply have local branches or consultants, but where the business is primarily concluded offline. Basically, however, hyperlocal marketing affects everyone, because Google and Facebook have changed their search algorithms in the last few months. This means: The company that has a local connection wins in the search results. For companies, however, this does not mean that they can only establish a local connection with a local branch. But they can also create the locality by linking a very specific offer with a specific feature of the area and placing advertising around it. If e.g. For example, if it’s raining in London, the ad could be associated with the rain.
Why should companies care about hyperlocal marketing?
Because our search behavior has changed completely and so have the search engines. Brands and companies have to do their homework here: maintain their location data and opening hours, pay attention to reviews and local content. If you do not maintain this information, you will not appear in the search results, which in turn means that customers will be lost. The topicality of the data is also important because we are becoming more and more dependent on virtual assistants such as e.g. B. the Google Assistant, Siri or Alexa. Because in the voice search there is only place 1 . So companies have to do even more to do good, hyper-local marketing so that they are noticed by virtual assistants.
How does hyperlocal marketing work?
- The first step is to ensure that the location data for all branches and the entire company is 100 percent updated and maintained . This basic data includes not only the address and opening hours, but also a description of the company and additional information. The second step is not about the question; who is my target group and how do I reach them. Rather, it is about putting yourself in the position of the target group and considering where the future customer might be at the moment. In this context we speak of three different phases: ” thinking” , ” planning” and ” doing” .
- The first phase deals with the situation in which the person thinks, for example, that they would like to go on vacation again. This could e.g. B. being on the subway on the way home after a stressful day at work. At this point in the customer journey, the first hyperlocal step must be initiated with the appropriate advertising and played out for the person.
- After getting the person’s attention, it’s time for the second phase. This can also take place at a completely different location, e.g. B. at home in front of the television. For example, if the person starts For example, when searching for information using an iPad, we know that we need mobile-optimized content for our hyperlocal marketing and that we need to link that information to what the person has already seen on their way home.
- The last and thus the planning phase is about the potential purchase. If the person with a specific search for e.g. For example, she googles travel agencies in Africa while walking through the pedestrian zone, it’s about appearing interesting enough for the person. Either the ad fundamentally addresses the existing interest by matching the keywords searched, or the ad matches both the content and the location of the search. It’s really about looking at the individual touchpoints of the customer journey and repeatedly linking them to place and time. This also means that the person in the thinking phase can never be led to the point of sale.
Are there certain channels that work better than others?
That’s actually a bit crazy, but it’s completely different per capita and per target group. However, it can be stated that Google AdWords plays an important role for the last phase, ie the ” doing “, as well as the mobile search on Google. In the ” thinking ” phase there are so many different channels that could be used. For example, some consume videos via a streaming service, others read newspapers online and yet others chat with their friends via messenger services such as WhatsApp. For the ” planning“-phase, Google AdWords is also interesting. In addition, messenger services or chatbot marketing can be used well here. However, it must be emphasized here that it is all about the interaction of all channels related to the customer journey.
What successes can companies expect?
Incredibly high conversion rates. In addition, companies do not lose the customer; there are fewer unsubscribes from newsletters or similar, for example, from which people can unsubscribe.
How can success be measured and evaluated?
On the one hand, this works very simply, of course, and there is also a more complex variant. The individual touchpoints can be analyzed and evaluated with a normal campaign tracking system. It becomes more complex the more providers are involved, the broader the database is and all interfaces have to be brought together in one system. It can e.g. For example, data from third-party providers can also be used, such as weather and traffic jam reports or personal movement profiles. For this reason, customer relationship management (CRM) also plays an important role. To build an even more loyal clientele, e.g. B. in connection with recommendation marketing, with which new customers for the respective shop or similar are generated in the respective area.
In addition, there are various tools for site maintenance. For example, to enter your data in Google My Business . But that’s just the technology behind it and doesn’t mean that the topic is closed. It is also about the question: How do I use the technology to expand my marketing strategy ? Companies should be aware that after the data maintenance step, there is still more to come. If you want to be successful here, you should work with someone who supports how campaigns can be developed based on this data and its maintenance in order to generate a business from it.It doesn’t matter whether it’s with the DAC Group or with someone else. It is about understanding and processing the data, the cause-effect relationship, in order to then make the derivations for it. What does it mean e.g. B. when a certain number of people navigated to my gas station. What can I recognize from this and what do I have to do now?
A look into the future: how will hyperlocal marketing evolve?
Because the mobile search for offers in the vicinity continues to increase, the importance of hyperlocality for companies will also increase. Then there is the topic of digital voice assistants : artificial intelligence is getting smarter and smarter and voice assistants are becoming increasingly popular. Companies must also be well positioned here and increasingly optimize their content for voice search. In addition, it is certain that the development of national marketing campaigns will increasingly go to local micro-campaigns.