When it comes to marketing, the world isn’t flat. For companies that need to perform marketing to people in different geographies, they quickly learn that different regions have different values, dialects and purchasing habits. This is especially relevant for businesses that rely on branch offices or franchises – these places depend heavily on foot traffic, word-of-mouth and local knowledge. What goals should these businesses set when it comes to creating region-specific marketing campaigns?
Brands that tune their marketing to specific regions will out-compete their industries
First, let’s talk about why location-specific marketing matters in the first place. With the wealth of information-gathering services available today, it’s possible to know more about what your consumers want – and where they want it – than ever before. In turn, consumers are extremely willing for marketers to take advantage of this information. Google notes that 80% of consumers want ads to be customized to where they live or where they are at the moment. Consumers don’t just want localized ads, they want to buy local. Again according to Google, when it comes to searches that lead to purchase within 24 hours, 20% of these searches are seeking local products or businesses – and just 7% of these searches are non-local.
Brands that take advantage of this information enjoy real success. Kleenex, for example, was able to use a combination of social listening and location data to understand where – in real time – customers were starting to complain of sore throats and runny noses. In other words, Kleenex was charting the course of the flu and the common cold. They then bought ad space in these areas, and as a result, their sales grew by 40% year over year.
Can franchise companies replicate this success?
Kleenex is not a franchise company and does not rely on branch offices. They used available data creatively and strategically. But in many ways, franchise or branch-based offices have an advantage over their monolithic peers when it comes to regional marketing. First, companies that exist across multiple locations tend to do their homework before they move in. Their research helps validate that the demand for their products or services exists in these regions, and offers specific insights for why. In addition, these organizations have the advantage of local employees who are able to provide information and context that can help shape the marketing programs that will run in their own communities.