Physical or online businesses, local SMEs, liberal professions… business is increasingly local and digital. What digital tools should be implemented to develop the activity of local brands? How to enhance promotions, make the best use of mapping resources and align physical point of sale and online presence? Details by Georges-Alexandre HaninCEO of Mobilosoft and author of local digital marketing.
Local digital marketing refers to many tools. But which ones have priority?
Before looking at the tools, it seems important to me to remember that Local Digital Marketing has an important component, the word Local. This involves highlighting a point of sale (store, bank branch, therapeutic office, restaurant) on the Internet to generate traffic. The central point will therefore be the creation of one page per point of sale. Many brands have not yet perceived this important point, as evidenced by the number of Store Locators designed in a “single page” mode.
The base consists of the creation, on the brand’s website, of a Store Locator made up of two standard pages. The “homepage” which presents the list of establishments of the sign and the local pages, one, for each point of sale. This page gathers all its information: identity (contact details, contact, hours) promotions, news, etc. This Store Locator must be optimized for loading on smartphones and include precise schema.org tagging to allow Google robots to perform precise crawling.
For customer acquisition, the most important medium to manage is Google Business Profile. This tool, made available by Google, allows you to manage the points of sale pages on Google Search and Google Maps. Every month, correctly referenced points of sale receive tens of thousands of impressions of their pages and thousands of conversions (routes, calls and clicks to the pages of the Store Locator).
For loyalty, we find the media of the Meta group, namely Facebook and Instagram. Good management of these helps to create a community of loyal customers.
How can a point-of-sale promotion campaign be accompanied by digital tools?
One of the first principles of communication is that a message must be recalled 7 times before its receiver remembers it. In Marketing, it is therefore important to repeat messages as many times as possible. Take a brand that is opening a new store. In the “traditional” world, he will advertise in the local newspaper, perhaps a box office, and have a team handing out leaflets to passers-by. If he has a bit of a budget, he will do an ad on the local TV/radio and some 4×3 displays. In 2022, 84% of consumers begin their buying process with an online search. If the point of sale is not “digitized”, it will not be found. At the same time, a new point of sale will take time to create a good natural referencing. He will need opinions, publish posts, etc. At the time of launch, its presence will therefore be almost zero.
Digital media can, however, help it get started through local digital advertising. The merchant can easily create geolocated campaigns on Google, Facebook, or even Proxistore. As a result, consumers in his neighborhood will have an additional channel to receive promotions. What’s more, this channel will potentially be targeted (on Google), to consumers looking for a product, service or point of sale related to its activity. We must therefore see digital media as a complement to traditional media. Simultaneous pressure from both sides can make sense.
The same principle can be used when a point of sale launches promotions on certain products. It will reference them on its store pages through publications (“posts”) or digital product catalogs. These catalogs and posts can also be used as the basis for paid campaigns. Once the consumer is in the store, a good display of the promotions on the shelf will reinforce the message for maximum activation.
How to make the best use of mapping resources?
Google Business Profile, the new name of Google My Business, optimizes display on Google Maps based on signals identified by Google to define a quality score. Here is the recipe for optimizing Google Business Profile at best:
- Ensure POS data is up to date at all times
- Update schedules on holidays
- Regularly publish new photos of the point of sale
- Collect as many opinions as possible, hoping that they will be as positive as possible
- Respond to all user reviews and questions
- Publish a Post at least twice a week
- Create and maintain a product catalog with at least 15 featured items
At the same time, Google maintains a strong link between the local Store Locator and Facebook pages. If these are managed in the same way, the point of sale’s quality score will increase further.
In a local digital marketing campaign, isn’t the key point to monitor the alignment with the marketing of the physical point of sale?
Absolutely, it is important that what is presented digitally is found in the point of sale.
If a brand wants to be efficient from a Local Digital Marketing point of view, it will be forced to decentralize this activity to managers and / or franchisees. They have a better knowledge of the news and how their activity fits into the local community.
In the case of a supermarket chain, for example, if a brand of mozzarella comes to demonstrate the product on the shelves, this is an opportunity to also communicate digitally. Since not all of the brand’s stores have the demonstration on the same day, adapting to the calendar of each store will be essential to push the information on digital media.
To buy local digital marketing, of Georges-Alexandre Hanin
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