Despite advancing globalization and more and more international and national brands and companies, a large part of the business is achieved on the regional level. In addition, large brands, in a decentralized structure, are dependent on addressing their customers and the individual target group locally. In order to reach these people, local marketing is used in most cases on various levels to target advertising.
In order to speak more precisely about local marketing, it is important to differentiate it from international (including global) and national marketing. National marketing refers to promoting commercial goods and services in one's own country. International marketing is used in different countries to make products or brands better known. This happens especially with large, global brands such as Coca-Cola, Nestlé and BMW. In comparison, local marketing is again limited within national marketing to an even smaller area of activity, which can consist of a city, municipality or region, for example. Thus, the target group of local marketing in particular is clearly defined. This type of marketing and advertising appeals to small, local companies and retailers on the one hand, but also to nationally active companies. They all rely on local marketing. Due to the different interests and living environments, not many companies can use international marketing strategies, especially in decentralized brands, marketing is usually adapted locally. Nevertheless, companies should also carry their strategy to the local level and strive for uniform (local) marketing.
Industries where local marketing is relevant:
When considering the possibilities of approaching customers successfully and with a strategy, traditionally print advertising is also an option in local marketing. A large number of potential customers can be reached directly and with little effort, especially with advertisements for regional media. In addition, new customers can be reached through advertising via handouts, flyers and brochures as well as mass mailings and online marketing. This option is particularly useful for existing customers and for exchanging information. Another important point that should not be neglected is the point of sale (POS) - in-store advertising. At the POS, potential customers can be addressed directly and, with the help of special measures, they can be convinced of the product and your company. In order to successfully draw customers' attention to the shop or office, it is advisable to pay attention to the design of the shop and the shop window. In addition, interested parties can be attracted to the POS through events such as readings, trade fairs or other campaigns. This in turn offers the possibility of distributing the printed advertising material such as postcards or stickers. However, in most cases it is no longer sufficient to limit yourself to classic advertising; online marketing is also becoming increasingly important for local advertising. Ideally, they create a connection between offline and online marketing - for example through printed QR codes that lead to the homepage or tips that provide information online about events in the store.
New, digital advertising media, online marketing and social media are also becoming increasingly popular on a regional level. Nowadays, when you first search for a business or a company in the region, you can no longer ignore search engines like Google. This development can be used for the strategy of local marketing. The problem of wastage, in particular, can almost be avoided through targeted online targeting. The location-based use of smartphones, but also most laptops, means that online advertising can also be tailored ideally and locally. Especially with social media and search engines (Google and Co.) the search results are successfully tailored to the current location of the user. In order to score as well as possible, it is advisable to keep your own homepage up to date and, for example, to integrate new and current events in order to provide visitors with the desired information quickly and easily.
In order to use social media in local marketing, the platforms must be regularly updated with relevant content several times a week. The right platform (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.) should be selected depending on the product or the services. In addition, social media is suitable as a platform to distribute digital ads and advertising and to show the content precisely to the right target group.
In general, the number of searches on the Internet at Google and Co. has increased significantly in recent years and has also become increasingly important in local marketing. The search is mostly done via Google, mobile and for a search query “nearby”, for example to do something else on the way or to withdraw money from the bank. It is therefore important to be findable for the relevant keywords during search engine optimization (SEO) and to optimize your homepage accordingly.
In order to be found on Google and other search engines on the Internet, there are some additional tips, such as being listed on various business directories (Local Listings). For example, a Google My Business entry or an entry on Google Places that shows the most important information on opening times, contact details and address at a glance. Often these are directly linked to reviews from customers, who should be regularly addressed by local marketing and who provide the impetus for improvement.
For the traffic on the website and to draw the attention of as many people as possible to the offers on the Internet, it helps to place external advertising, so-called ads. This can either be switched directly to search engines such as Google, to other sites, online media sites or to social media. The advantage here, compared to printed advertisements, is that clicks and other interaction rates show the direct measurability and the simple cost control by paying per lead.
Especially in the local marketing of decentralized companies, it is important to keep the appearance and address, despite local marketing campaigns, uniform across the company. Only those who can offer a coherent look as well as uniform photos and standards will bind customers in the long term and create a high potential for identification with the entire brand. In addition to the content, the focus here is primarily on the appearance. Uniform layout and familiar color schemes, photos and motifs bind customers. A strong corporate identity also makes it possible to set yourself apart from competitors and strengthens the brand and the products. It is therefore important not to forget what the entire company stands for and how that can be expressed when it comes to the local focus. In most cases, however, this can only be solved through uniform communication and good agreements between the individual partners.
In order to simplify precisely this communication and the exchange between the marketing center and the team of partners as well as among the individual partners, software solutions can help. In these programs and portals, content and templates can be passed on to the local partners and the corporate design can be retained. There are various options and cost models on the market for integrating these software solutions.
A comparatively small solution is the implication of web-to-print programs. This is particularly recommended for companies that want to rely almost exclusively on printed advertising material. In this system, brochures, flyers, mailings and the like can be created directly and adapted to the local market. Thanks to the integrated confirmation, the print data can be forwarded directly to external service providers, who process the order and deliver the finished products directly to the branch or the desired recipient.
Marketing automation software
With marketing automation software, however, the marketing processes can be almost automated. These software solutions make it possible to use different channels and publish content directly via the software. Thus, for example, newsletter campaigns and social media channels can be easily and clearly controlled from one system. This simplifies work processes and simplifies a uniform structure on different channels.
Marketing resource management
A Marketing Resource Management solution mainly focuses on the planning and coordination part of decentralized marketing. The software support works primarily to better coordinate marketing activities and make them more efficient. In the software, all parties involved are united on one platform. Planning and budgeting processes can be carried out and new projects and content can be developed. Various data are included and control and documentation are combined on one system.
Marketing portals offer the ideal all-in-one solution to guarantee local partners access to all the necessary marketing documents and processes. They offer the opportunity to share templates for a cross-media marketing mix and to be represented in local marketing on a wide variety of media channels. In addition to templates for advertising material, templates for marketing and budget plans can be published, brand centers can be created and communication between head office and partners can be improved. Thus, a marketing portal is the software solution on which all areas of decentralized marketing are combined.