- By Colleen McNamara
This article originally appeared in Masterclassing’s Experts blog on Wednesday, February 16th. Our Director of Agency Sales, Lindsay Holesh, discusses the importance of local search for enterprise businesses.
Digitization has been great for marketers. Avenues to reach new audiences seem to be expanding constantly, and the opportunities to get super creative with our campaigns (and personalize), keep growing. However, the byproduct of the proliferation of digital marketing and its many facets has lead to some businesses forgetting about the basics of a solid marketing strategy.
What are the basics, you ask? Ensuring your local search data is in order, so nearby people can find your business when they’re looking. Consider this a modern-day open sign for the online crowd.
What’s more, the ever-growing reliance on mobile devices to answer questions to consumer’s immediate needs has catalyzed a spike in “near me” searches. Consider this: you’re in a new city, and you want to find the nearest Starbucks closest to get your morning fix. Naturally, you turn to your phone and search, “coffee near me.” Google calls this critical touchpoint in a consumer journey a “micro-moment” — and marketers need to make sure their business’ information is there to drive ready and willing foot traffic to their stores.
If you’re not convinced, consider these stats: 71% of smartphone users say they’ve used a store locator to find a specific store location, and 61% percent of smartphone users say they’re more likely to purchase an item from a business that takes the time to customize location information. And, about those Millennials! 87% of Millennials say they have their smartphone at their side, day and night.
Here’s where it gets interesting. While you’re guaranteed to see an increase of foot traffic when you drop your business’ pin on the map (and always keep your data up to date!), once that’s taken care of, you can really start to ramp up your local presence. Here are just a few ideas:
1. Optimize your local presence with an intelligent network of search and discovery sites:
- Don’t be listed everywhere, be listed where it matters! The model of spraying your local data across the web is outdated. Curate your online presence according to your business
2. Launch a review solicitation campaign to get more reviews to each listing:
- Consumers strongly consider reviews on their path to purchase; you need to invest accordingly. From SEO to branding to legitimacy, consumer reviews are a vital piece of the local marketing puzzle.
3. Use data and analytics derived from your local search campaigns for intelligent local marketing.
- Now that you know who’s searching for you, where they’re searching and when, you can curate local marketing campaigns to match the needs of each of your business’ locations.