By Kellie Auman, Marketing and Communications Director, LogicBay
Because brands of all sizes — even national- and global-level organizations — are focusing more attention on local marketing, this is a good time to start thinking along those lines. If you and your indirect sales network aren’t prepared to focus more marketing activity on local efforts in 2019, it’s not going to be easy to keep up with the competition.
There are several reasons for this shift towards local marketing, including:
However, for brands which have been mostly focused on national-level campaigns, a shift towards a local focus can be tricky. We’ve seen the same challenges come up with some regularity.
To fully optimize local marketing, here are four of the biggest challenges you need to address.
Ranking highly on local Google searches can be tricky, particularly for an indirect sales operation. You’ll need to work closely with your top partners, encouraging them to utilize smart search engine optimization that will encourage more local hits. Fortunately, this shouldn’t be a hard sell, since they also benefit from better local SEO.
One thing you can do to help is provide them with more content which is designed to be customizable. Blog articles, for example, should include spaces for them to fill in their location, even their neighborhood, to help encourage better local placement. Video content is even better, assuming they have the capabilities to edit the video to include their own local-focused material.
Many national-level brands have difficulty going local due to a lack of data. After all, the needs and interests of buyers in various markets can be quite different. You won’t get far appealing to a New Yorker with the same pitch you’d use on a Los Angeleno!
For this, communication with your local partners is all-important. Get their advice and trust their knowledge when it comes to their own back yard. This will go even better if you have centralized data collection, so that – for example – you could compare conversion rates between leads in different areas, to deduce the differences.
One issue now has to do with how the advertising/marketing industry sees itself. Everyone wants to be working on big national-level campaigns, the sorts of things that can earn a Clio. By contrast, local marketing is often seen as slumming it. Depending on your situation, you may have push back from marketing/advertising teams who don’t want to do smaller-scale campaigns.
One alternative would be to look towards hiring smaller local marketing firms with knowledge of the regions you’re targeting. They’re usually more affordable, and they’ll be glad for the business.
Social media can be a major part of local marketing. After all, it’s a direct line between a brand and its customers. Unfortunately, it often goes ignored. In fact, according to MarketingLand, 80% of would-be buyers’ social media inquiries never received a response during the holiday shopping season!
It may be time to consider hiring one or more full-time staff members, specifically devoted to maintaining your social media accounts – and with an eye towards responding to every serious inquiry. You may also be able to talk your partners into taking up some of the slack with their own social media presence, if they have one. (And if they don’t, talk to them about why they should.)
A version of this article appeared first on LogicBay’s Blog page.
LogicBay provides technology-enabled Partner Relationship Management (PRM) solutions that empower organizations to build, scale, and optimize their sales channel. LogicBay PRM technology supports the entire sales channel life cycle from recruiting and onboarding sales partners to managing a global network of partners in multiple languages. Visit https://www.logicbay.com to learn more.