Over the past few months, our Brand Battle series has broken down the Six Pillars of Multi-Location Optimization, focusing on data quality, local SEO, online reviews, social engagement, competitor benchmarking and local advertising. Across all the different brands we've examined we have noticed nobody's local advertising campaigns are really local.
For each pair of brands we compared, there were two recurring errors with advertising. Some brands did not even attempt to have local campaigns. Their online advertisements were sent to the masses, with no personalization, no local intel and no impactful targeting. Then there were the more common offenders, brands that targeted local keywords such as city names and states, but are not linking their advertisements to their local pages.
In this blog, we’re going to break down these two errors and why they need to be fixed. Depending on which type of advertising you are pushing, choose the section the section that best applies.
Error: National Ads With No Personalization
With the amount of personal optimization available online, we’re shocked to see that some brands are not taking advantage of the local advertising you can provide your customers without ever leaving your office. Still not convinced? Here are some benefits to local advertising campaigns:
HIGH RELEVANCY: National Advertising’s one-size-fits-all approach won’t cut it anymore for today’s consumers. In fact Google's recent study noted that 4 in 5 consumers want search ads customized to their city, zip code or immediate surroundings. Advanced targeting methods have the ability deliver advertisements to your customers based on location, demographics, weather, and time of day.
ACTIONABLE DATA: 50% of consumers who conducted a local search on their smartphone visited a store within a day. Local consumers are typically on-the-go and make purchase decisions quickly. A well-developed, locally-targeted advertising campaign will provide your consumers with the most actionable data possible and increase the likelihood of bringing them in store.
HIGHER ROI: Local advertising is the most cost-effective way to find new customers in today's mobile-driven world. With 18% of local searches on smart phone lead to a purchase within a day it’s clear to see that intent to buy is higher in local searches than national searches. Highly targeted local campaigns convert better and, for paid efforts, cost a fraction of a national campaigns. By running a dedicated ad campaign for each location, marketing managers will be able to distribute and allocate budget based on individual stores' performance.
Error: Local Advertisements Not Linked to Local Pages
This practice limits customers from finding exactly what service they are looking for and where to get that service. And at the end of the day you’re trying to provide the most informative campaigns to convert your online traffic to offline traffic. By linking searchers directly to a location where they can obtain the service that they are looking for you’ll improve their path to purchase while improving your ROI. If you have local pages set up, and you have local advertisements, take this step now to get twice the love from Google.
INCREASE AD RANK: Google only makes money if your advertisement receives a click, and searchers will only click on advertisements relevant to their search. This means the more optimized your advertisement is, from the phrase to the site it’s link to, the higher your advertisement will rank on the search results.
Below is an example of an advertising campaign our team worked that linked to local pages. Notice the average position of the advertisement correlates to the high quality score.
INCREASE CTR: Higher ad rank means that your ads are more visible to the right audience. With this visibility comes an increased likelihood of satisfying user intent. When you double up by creating this linkage your brand is one step closer to converting your online traffic into an in-store purchase.
IMPROVED CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE: It’s counterintuitive to spend an excess amount of time tailoring your advertisements for the a hyper-local audience only to have searchers click on a link that directs them to your corporate page. Brands that link their customers searching for local intel to their local pages will be able to provide all the information they are in search of.
Aside from advertising, our Brand Battles give a side-by-side comparison of different brands’ local presence across a variety of verticals. Read the newest installment between Home Depot and Lowe’s Home Improvement today on Street Fight: