Location-Based Marketing: What You Need to Know

By Raubi Perilli

      Feb 26, 2022     Solutions    

For many businesses to succeed, they don’t need to connect with customers all across the world, country, or even state. They just need to reach the nearby customers who are most likely to come into their store and buy from their business.   

That’s where location-based marketing comes in.

What Is Location-Based Marketing? 

Location-based marketing includes any marketing tactic that targets audiences based on their geographic location. Location-based marketing campaigns use historical customer data, location targeting, or real-time location-tracking to identify and reach specific, targeted customers.

The tactics can be used by small businesses as well as franchises and regional brands looking to tap into a specific local market.

Benefits of Location-Based Marketing

Location-based marketing is an effective marketing strategy for any brand looking to connect with nearby customers because you can: 

  • Reach the customers most likely to do business with you. Through location-based marketing, you don’t waste resources reaching customers who are never going to visit your business because they live too far from your location.    
  • Drive store visits and sales. Location-based marketing reaches customers when they are most likely to visit a store. It can effectively drive foot-traffic and encourage nearby customers to notice, visit, and buy from a specific location. A report by Factual found that “nine in ten marketers said location-based advertising and marketing resulted in higher sales.”  
  • Produce a high return on investment (ROI). When you target the customers most likely to do business with you and stop wasting resources on reaching people who will never visit your business -- you get a better bang for your buck and higher return on investment.   

Factual’s report found that 94% of marketers plan to use location data in their marketing, so you should embrace this tactic if you want to reap these benefits and keep up in 2020.   

Related: Create Local Marketing Success with These 5 Critical Elements

8 Elements of Location-Based Marketing You Need to Know

Now that you know what location-based marketing is and why it’s effective, let’s look at some elements that help you implement this strategy. 

#1) Data

Data is the fuel that leads to location-based marketing success. Collecting and analyzing historical consumer data helps you pinpoint areas that are hot spots for customers so you know where to target. Real-time data can tell you when customers are in a specific area so you can send marketing messages when customers are primed for receiving them.   

Learn More: Why It's Important to Own Your Business Data and How to Start Collecting It

#2) Geotargeting

Geotargeting is a paid ad campaign setting that allows you to show ads only to users within a specific zip code, city, or geographic region. You can use it to target the areas where your customers are located when running local PPC campaigns, social media ads, or other types of digital ads.   

Learn More: Geotargeting: The Powerful Marketing Tactic Local Business Cannot Ignore

#3) Geofencing

Geofencing is the process of building a virtual boundary and showing ads to people when they move in or out of the defined area. It’s proximity marketing that uses GPS technology to show highly targeted ads to people based on where they are and what they are doing or experiencing. This is a powerful approach as you can cater messages to what people are looking for in specific locations -- like presenting a mall shopper with a coupon to a restaurant in the mall.

Learn More: Using Geofencing Advertising to Target Customers at Exactly The Right Place

#4) Location-Based Push Notifications

A location-based push notification is a tactic that sends a message to someone when they enter a specific region or area. The message may be an app alert or text message, and it is triggered via a type of beacon technology, geotargeting, or geofencing.

#5) Location-Based Augmented Reality

Location-based augmented reality is the process of anchoring data or features to a specific geographic location or place. The most recognizable version of location-based augmented reality is Pokémon GO. It uses an app to scan an area to find information or bonus materials (in this case, a Pokémon). This type of location-based marketing is relatively new but expected to grow as it creates a fun way to drive audiences to visit or engage with specific locations. 

#6) Local SEO

Local SEO is a series of tactics designed to make your brand show up on search engine results pages (SERPs) when nearby customers search for terms related to your business. Through a series of tactics, you optimize your website and online brand presence so you are more likely to appear in top placements on SERPs and connect with nearby customers who would be likely to visit your business.   

Learn More: Local SEO: How to Get Your Business To Show Up In Local Searches

#7) Location Pages 

Location pages are website pages designed to share information and promote one location of a multi-location business or franchise. Location pages are important because they give local customers a way to find information about the specific location they want to visit. It also aids in other location-based marketing tactics because you can send paid traffic to the location page rather than the entire branded website, taking local customers directly to the information that matters to them.

Learn More: How To Optimize a Business Website When You Have Multiple Locations 

#8) Location Tags

Location tags are pieces of information in a social media post that refer to and link back to a specific business location. You see location tags when someone checks in on Facebook or when someone shares a photo on Instagram adds their location. Location tags are a form of free location-based marketing as users are the ones adding and spreading info about your brand.

Location-Based Marketing Software

There are hundreds of options available when it comes to marketing software or marketing platforms. Everything from marketing automation solutions to robust customer relationship management (CRM) systems. However, when it comes to local marketing, it's important to have a location-based marketing platform that includes all the necessary tools and integrates into other leading local ad platforms.

Related: 6 Regional Marketing Tips for Brands Trying to Tap Into a Local Market

Having a software solution specifically built with location-based marketing in mind, the benefits include:

  • Easier to manage solution for location-based marketing
  • More comprehensive solution that brings together multiple location-based marketing tools
  • Aggregated location data for enhanced reporting and marketing insights

Location-Based Marketing Tools

Since COVID caused major shutdowns and people to hibernate, stay closer to home and adapt to a more localized spending behavior, there has been a cross-over between "local" and "online".  During this time, more location-based marketing tools have become widely used to help businesses thrive in their local communities.

5 Tools You Need for Effective Location-Based Marketing

Here is a list of location-based marketing tools that your business must be using to compete locally.

  1. Google Business Profiles to establish a local brand presences on the leading "near me" consumer platform
  2. Local Search Position Tracker for managing Local Search marketing
  3. Geofencing Advertising Management to deliver precise location-based targeting of target audiences
  4. Text and Email Marketing Tools to reach existing customers and prospects directly on their devices
  5. Location Page Management for managing local pages on platforms including MyArea Network, Facebook, Google and Yelp

Start Attracting More Nearby Customers

When your customers are located in a specific geographic area, there is no need to design marketing campaigns that reach the masses. Instead, hone in on a specific area and use location-based marketing tactics to target the people most likely to visit and buy from your business.

Looking to grow your location-based marketing plans? Let’s talk.

MyArea Network has proven methods for using marketing and technology to reach nearby customers and shoppers. Schedule a free consultation with our team to find out how we can use our experience to fine-tune your location-based marketing tactics and start attracting more nearby customers today.