With the close of Brandify Summit 2016, brands can take away some valuable lessons in location-based marketing, specifically regarding the importance of customer-centricity and personalization for brand engagement and local conversions. Technologies such as mobile devices and artificial intelligence have reshaped customer expectations and set new standards for brands to compete with. To wrap up the day’s collection of excellent seminars and inspiring speakers, here are are three major considerations for brands to keep in mind when forming a local marketing strategy.
Personal Assistants Are Setting New Standards
Voice search is growing faster than text-based search and it is quickly becoming the search method of choice for both mobile and static users. Voice search pervades nearly every aspect of technology from Siri and Cortana to the Amazon Echo and Google Home. Research has found that the queries performed through voice search are not necessarily longer than text-based searches, but have a distinctly personal aspect and normally encompass keywords that have local intent.
Voice search queries with local intent often include keywords regarding location hours, menu choices, prices and nearby location searches. Mobile voice search is three times more likely to be local-based than text search. Brands can maximize their local presence by localizing keywords for “near me” searches that trigger quick answers in the SERPs and allow the user to complete their intention without visiting a web page. Personal assistants have raised customer expectations regarding a brand’s ability to anticipate their needs or react to their daily habits, and local brands must be prepared to meet and exceed these customer expectations in order to be competitive.
Mobile Proximity is More Than a Message Center
Beacon technology has given brands a great opportunity to understand the buyer’s journey and interact with customers on a more personal and local level, but many brands are not using mobile proximity to its fullest potential. Beacons are more than a message hub to communicate with customers when they walk through your door and push ads at them in attempts to have them walk out with a purchase. Customers are continuously demanding a more personal and contextual brand experience that is catered to them, and beacons provide the technology to allow for this type of experience.
Beacons act as an offline cookie, allowing brands to gather data about the user and their geographical preferences in order to pretargeting and retargeting campaigns and utilize contextual mobile marketing. More than ever, customers are using their mobile devices to help them make in-store purchases, and brands can take advantage of this by using predictive marketing to offer users relevant ads and offers in their immediate context. Mobile proximity is a powerful marketing tool when used to its fullest potential.
Brands Need to Adopt a Post-Digital Mindset
As the previous two points have suggested, customers are increasingly demanding a higher level of engagement and immediacy from brands. Technology is everywhere and it has not only empowered customers, but made them entitled and impatient. Consumers have become so accustomed to the speed and immediacy of digital technology that instant gratification has become normalized and expected, and brands who fail to provide this kind of immediacy are quickly disposed of and forgotten.
Local marketers need to adopt a post-digital mindset, which means being human, helpful and handy; businesses need to consistently follow through on their promises, which is not always easy for enterprise brands with a multitude of locations. Brands need to understand customer moments and react to them accordingly using data as a system of insight. Focus on winning your customers’ trust through transparency and follow-through, and engage with customers in the context of their immediate situations by providing relevant, valuable content in a one-to-moment context. Brands that adopt a post-digital mindset and engage with customers in immediacy and context are in the path to a successful customer experience.