A new buzzword lately is the term “local marketing” but many people disagree about what that term actually means, which leads to confusion about how to integrate local marketing campaigns into a broad business marketing plan.
Local marketing generally means the strategy and actions used to communicate a message to your target market based on localized differences. Other business owners consider local marketing as focusing on finding their target market close to home and then slowly branching out to neighboring communities.
The ultimate goal of local marketing is to obtain a favorable result, such as making a purchase or becoming a client, as a result of more targeted communication.
Using Facebook ads as a local marketing tool might seem counterintuitive given the worldwide appeal of Facebook and the hundreds of millions of users who are online every day. The beauty of Facebook ads, however, is the ability to narrowly define your target market so only those people who fall into those set demographics will see your ad.
As an example, let’s say a new dentist is opening an office in a small town in Connecticut. In addition to having a grand opening celebration and publishing a press release, this dentist can use Facebook ads to specifically target those who live within a certain radius of this small Connecticut town. Now when those residents log in to Facebook, they will see the dentist’s ad and hopefully will click on it to obtain more information.
In a different example, a large, local retail store wants to build another store in a different state. They don’t want customers to forget about the headquarters, so they place specific Facebook ads for people in that location. But they can also place other Facebook ads with different local keywords to attract customers in their new location.
Even worldwide companies can practice local marketing. Advertising to customers in North America is different than attracting customers in Europe or Asia. For example, McDonald’s is recognized around the world and they even have different products which appeal to their customers’ likes in different parts of the world.
On this level, local marketing means customizing their message to a specific country and their regional products can be advertised only to those markets. They would use Facebook ads in exactly the same way as the small town dentist in the first example even though the scope and reach of each business is vastly different.
Before embarking on a local marketing Facebook campaign, do some simple research. Identify your target market, including age, gender, income level, and geographic location. Make a list of keywords this market uses to find the information or products you sell. Make sure you supply a solution to whatever problem plagues your market. Then set a budget for your ads and write some creative copy.
Or you can hire an internet marketing consultant to take care of all the research and details of your Facebook ad campaign. A consultant can also help you analyze the data from the campaign and integrate other forms of online marketing.
Also remember to keep engaging your target market on Facebook by “Liking” other pages in your community, offering your expertise when appropriate on other people’s comments, and asking questions. If customers see that a real person exists behind a company name and logo, they will be more open to making a purchase.