Big Brands, Small Businesses Turning to Location-​Based Marketing

Local businesses are anxious to use location-​based marketing services. At least one research shop, Visiongain, predicts that advertisers will spend $4.4 billion on these services by the end of 2012. But analysts believe both local businesses and large brands need to integrate their efforts on this format with improved data management in order to truly use location-​based marketing effectively.

Brennan Hayden, executive vice president and chief operating officer at WDA, points out the challenges businesses face in using location-​based marketing. Hayden notes that the infrastructure for data analysis and management with respect to traditional advertising results is all about aggregates and is studied ‘after the fact.’ On the contrary, for location-​based marketing to work, businesses must know exactly where consumers are in real-​time. Advertisers and agencies must have ads ready to deliver in advance, react immediately to traffic information that is specific and individualized and then capture responses for quick adjustments.

One way to improve the ROI on this type of marketing is to connect with marketing services partners like Foursquare. The Foursquare service is expected to have 28 million registered users by year end and these consumers can be incentivized to patronize local businesses.

Beyond that, analysts also believe national brands will need to do more to localize their online marketing. Previously a national brand may have run print ads in local newspapers. If they have dropped that strategy in favor of a national Facebook page, they need to connect with local consumers.  Brian Wool, vice president of Localeze,  suggests that these big companies should develop local Facebook pages to build local social communities which will be more easily linked to location-​based marketing efforts.

[Source: Johnson, Lauren. Location-​based services. Mobilemarketer​.com. 31 Oct. 2012. Web. 2 Nov. 2012] 
Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.