When you hear “local marketing”, what comes to mind? Is it that cupcake shop down the street from your office with weekly 2-for-1 specials? Or maybe the gym your friend found on Yelp with the 20-minute workouts? Chances are, you thought of a B2C shop first – but that’s about to change. The same sense of personalization that makes local marketing so effective for B2C businesses can work wonders on your B2B mobile strategy.
Mobile usage is on the rise
Sure, digital marketing is essential – but without a solid mobile marketing strategy in place, you could be missing out on the chance to reach a wealth of local businesses. Consider this: mobile usage comprises a whopping 65% of all time spent on digital media. That means your work doesn’t stop when you create a mobile-friendly website. The next step is putting location-based marketing to work for your business.
What is location-based marketing?
According to a study conducted by Google, over 60% of smartphone users want to see more personalized mobile advertising based on their immediate location.
Enter location-based marketing.
Simply defined as the use of marketing to target mobile users within a certain geographic area (or geo-targeting), location-based marketing is an often underutilized strategy for businesses who aren’t selling directly to consumers.
Let’s walk through a detailed example to illustrate one option with location-based marketing.
The scenario: Say there’s an upcoming conference and the attendee list consists predominantly of your target customers. Jackpot!
If you’re not nearby and not attending the conference, advertise your product or service directly to attendees with highly targeted content. Use conference-specific verbiage and imagery to attract the viewers' attention and direct them to landing pages with content that appeals directly to them as attendees – as well as potential users of your product. It’s like you’re co-marketing with the conference without the headache.
If you are attending the conference, promote a locally hosted event (like a lunch-and-learn or happy hour) where you can discuss your product or service and watch the clicks on your local ad roll right in. Bring your existing local customers to the event as an additional conversion optimization technique.
Local to the conference but not actually attending? Use that happy hour as an opportunity to meet and mingle with attendees without paying for an expensive booth that attendees may not even visit. Promote your event on Twitter using the conference hashtag to grab as many eyes as possible.
This example is just one of the many event-based advertising strategies that you could be utilizing. You can even target attendees of a user group for your competitor’s product. If they’ve visited your website before and are attending a user group for a competitor, you could easily draw their interest with a competitor comparison.
Of course, local events are just one way to put location-based marketing to work for you. Local PPC and Facebook ads lend themselves well to mobile geo-targeting, as well.
Incorporate mobile marketing into your SEO efforts
Local mobile marketing opens up a world of options to reach your customers in new ways. Take a look at your current and target customers and consider the ways your B2B company can factor into their everyday mobile searches. By tailoring your mobile marketing to your local customers, you won’t just provide them with a more personalized approach – you’ll deliver a more resonant customer experience.
Depending on the type of business you're running, it could still be beneficial to have your clients close by. For example, if you own a plumbing company, it wouldn't hurt to be on speed dial for a local corporation. Similarly, if you run a consulting firm, wouldn't it be nice to have local clients that you could take out for a business lunch?
In that sense, many of the SEO tactics that B2C companies are using could be helpful for B2Bs. In the case of your plumbing company, when that local corporation searches for plumbers in the area, you want to be the first name that pops up on their search results page. You can achieve this through the use of PPC ads or good ol' organic sources. Once you've attracted their attention, you can go on to get them on retainer - maybe offering them periodic maintenance or a discounted price to be their primary plumbing service provider.
For your local consulting firm, the approach could be a bit different. Face-to-face meetings can be hugely beneficial for B2B companies, but it all starts with the potential client finding you in the first place. By targeting local mobile users, you'll show up prominently on their search results page, but you could even take it a step further.
For instance, what if you ran a local, targeted ad offering a free consultation coffee-and-chat session to potential clients? That's not a bad deal! Apart from the cost of running the ad itself (which can vary significantly depending on several factors), bringing on a new client for the cost of a cup of coffee is a pretty good investment.
Location-based marketing is something that all businesses should be implementing, regardless of who the target market is. The fact is, so many people are conducting business over their phones these days that it'd be silly not to incorporate mobile marketing into your overall strategy. You could be missing out on a lot of potential clients! Don't be that guy.