With smartphones becoming increasingly more popular the opportunity for businesses to engage with consumers based on their current location is becoming ever more attainable.
Location-based marketing involves the delivery of multimedia and other content to a user of a smartphone or mobile device based upon their location. It allows businesses to adapt their marketing messages based on where consumers are geographically, and their travel destination habits.
As many as 26% of mobile users are regularly using a navigation tool, map or related function which automatically determines their location. There are a number of location-based strategies, which can be categorised into “push” or “pull” marketing.
Push methods involve Bluetooth and SMS alerts, alerting consumers when they are near stores or venues. They can sometimes be considered invasive tactics and therefore consumers may be less receptive to the marketing messages.
Push methods are considered a better approach, using consumers’ locations and search habits to deliver information and offers enticing consumers into local outlets.
There are a number of ways in which businesses can appeal to local consumers. Mobile apps can detect a user’s location automatically and therefore can entice a consumer into a local store easily. Examples of this would be such as that of Argos with the ability to check local stock and reserve items for collection. Other examples would include cinemas, theatres and venues being able to target consumers in the local area and provide them with last minute offers on tickets.
Mobile searches are growing at a faster rate than desktop searches. Many mobile searches revolve around local specific phrases, and it is advisable to include this into keyword research and SEO strategies. This allows smaller businesses with a smart local search strategy to compete with larger competitors.
Google’s Mobile Adwords allows businesses to pick a location and target ads within a specific radius. The facility also allows businesses to include click to call options and include maps with directions to help drive customers to the stores.
Other ways in which businesses can appeal to local consumers include Foursquare, Facebook Deals, directory apps, Google Places, voucher apps and by creating hyperlocal content. More and more people are using their smartphones every day and with this, businesses should be utilising the many ways in which is possible to successfully target consumers through location-based marketing.