BOISE, Idaho--(BUSINESS WIRE)--While a small percentage of national brands that rely on local distribution channels are able to intentionally impact sales at the local level – where consumers most often buy – the majority are not able to. Competing priorities and a plethora of new media channels and digital tactics continue to get in their way. Further, a lack of focus on new processes, tools and technologies keep national brands from capturing the vast opportunity in local markets.
This lack of attention on local marketing is a detriment to the success of national brands, according to Balihoo (www.Balihoo.com) and is why the company is releasing its “Five Essential Strategies for Local Marketing Success” today. They are designed to help national marketers increase top-line business growth in 2013 and will be rolled out in more detail via Balihoo’s blog.
Balihoo’s “Five Essential Strategies for Local Marketing Success” include:
1. Demand Generation is the Last Thing to Consider. Many national brands jump directly to demand generation activities when engaging in local marketing, in particular to capture new audiences. However, lack of demand is typically not the issue; the issue is capturing the customers who are already looking for the brand’s products in the local marketplace but instead buying from a competitor. National brands should first help their affiliates capture current demand and nurture existing customers. Simultaneously, they should build the infrastructure needed to scale local efforts across multiple markets and give them access to aggregated tracking. Only then should investments be made for capturing new audience demand.
2. Stop Building Programs for the Biggest Players. Most national brands focus on their top-tier resellers when building marketing programs, yet this group typically neither needs nor wants this support, as they have in-house marketing resources and their own brand objectives. National brands need to provide the most marketing support to the 75 percent of affiliates in the “meaty middle” of their revenue base. This is a large group of resellers or agents who, while they may not individually make a large revenue contribution, together represent a real opportunity to grow the top line. They are desperate for help from their national brands, especially in digital channels that require significant technical knowledge.
3. Modify Outdated Co-Op Programs. As a strategic marketing investment, co-op programs require partnership between the national brand and the local affiliate. The days of “set it and forget it” co-op marketing programs are over. National brands are not keeping pace with the evolving marketing landscape and are missing opportunities to capture their fair share of local market demand via co-op programs. It’s time to add digital tactics, educate local affiliates on how to use them, incentivize and build measurable programs that are right for the brand and deliver ROI.
4. Make Local Websites the Hub for Successful Local Marketing. Brands need a local online presence because consumers are looking for them there. A local website is the hub for all local marketing and SEO efforts. It captures consumer demand, streamlines marketing efforts and provides metrics for future campaign optimization, which is extremely important when a national brand is relying on thousands of local websites. And then when the brand is ready to execute a local social media or PPC campaign, they’re ready and waiting to give customers what they want: local business name, address, phone number, products carried, store hours, or even a photo of the business owner or storefront.
5. Value the Phone. The facts around phone call effectiveness and use are astounding, yet most national marketers rarely think about enabling local call tracking numbers when expanding campaigns to local markets. With the exploding use of mobile phones and the fact that consumers actually want to make purchases with local businesses via the phone, incorporating trackable phone numbers specific to local affiliates into all marketing activities is critical to the success - and measurement - of campaigns.
“I’m shocked by how many national brands have yet to realize the strategic importance of enabling effective local marketing,” commented Shane Vaughan, CMO of Balihoo. “With the ability that consumers have to search for your brand’s local retailers, dealers, agents and the like – and instead come across a competitor who has out-marketed you at the local level – there is simply no excuse for not building a concerted infrastructure to capture demand at the local level. It’s one of the most observable, necessary ways to increase top-line growth without significantly increasing marketing dollars.”
Balihoo’s “Five Essential Tactics for Local Marketing Success” will be explained in more detail over the next few weeks on the company’s blog: http://marketing.balihoo.com/. To receive the information on your desktop, please subscribe to the blog via email or RSS feed.
Balihoo is the premier provider of Local Marketing Automation (LMA) technology and services to national brands with local marketing needs. By automating local marketing, Balihoo gives national brands unprecedented control over local marketing execution and the ability to control the customer experience closer to the point of purchase. Additional information about Balihoo is available at www.balihoo.com.