A New Way to Think About Local: Last Mile Advertising | Street Fight

Sponsored Content

A New Way to Think About Local: Last Mile Advertising

0 Comments 25 March 2014 by

Paisaje de carretera.Concepto de viaje en carretera.Every purchase is a unique journey. A consumer starts with a need, desire, impulse or inspiration; takes actions that lead toward the satisfaction of that feeling; and finally, moves forward with a purchase. While this “path” always has a beginning and an end, it is rarely linear. Instead, consumers navigate various forms of media both online and offline that all circle around, and lead to, the purchase.

While advertisers today seek to take advantage of an increasingly fragmented media environment, those focused on local advertising have different challenges and opportunities in that they are in closer proximity to the point of purchase. Even with the tremendous growth of online shopping and e-commerce, two-thirds of all local purchases are still taking place in-person at brick-and-mortar locations, according to a 2013 BIA/Kelsey survey. This demonstrates the importance of adapting and engaging advertising on a local level.

Last year, our team at the Local Search Association interviewed executives from a range of advertising agencies, platforms and experts including R/GA, Sears, Twitter, Microsoft, YP, Groupon, Mashable and the IAB to develop a better understanding of what makes the local advertising market unique. We emerged from those conversations with an overwhelming feeling that the local space isn’t clearly distinguishable from advertising as a whole, but with a strong conviction that it could and should be. This is where we believe the term “Last Mile” can bring some clarity.

Some may recall the telecommunication industry’s use of “Last Mile” to define the final leg of networks delivering communications connectivity to customers. There is an obvious parallel to how local advertising works. Last Mile Advertising reflects locally targeted ads or messages that are delivered close to the point of purchase and facilitate consumer actions.

We see three segments that make up the Last Mile Advertising universe: Seek, Discover and Consider. Let’s define each of these segments in greater detail:

Seek: In the Seek segment, consumers are ready-to-buy, but are actively looking for a specific business that can sell them the product and service they want to purchase. In most cases, their queries are tied to a geographic location.

Local advertisers leverage a variety of platforms and methods to more effectively reach consumers engaged in this segment, including print and online directories, mobile apps, search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM), and listings management services. The integration of functionality tools such as click-to-call, click for map and online reservations and appointment bookings services are driving consumer actions within this segment.

Discover: In this segment, consumers are informed about a business and its products or services that they didn’t necessarily know was available and/or didn’t plan on purchasing. Consumers are attracted to this segment via digital and mobile ad networks, location-based apps and services, daily deals offerings, email and SMS marketing, digital and print coupons, signage and other awareness-building advertising. One-of-a-kind deals and offers that eventually lead to purchases are driving actions in this segment.

Consider: In this segment, consumers are considering a purchase, but want more information on the business, product or service they’ve identified. Consumers engage in this segment by browsing business websites, social media pages, online reviews, and videos. Advertisers manage their presence and generate leads by activating comprehensive reputation management strategies and content marketing that works hard to convince potential customers to move forward with a purchase.

Consumers navigate these segments in different ways depending on their specific circumstances. For example, a consumer may simply look for a local business via an online directory and call to make a purchase – staying fully within the Seek segment. In another situation, that same consumer may receive a daily deal, visit the business’ website, and then search for a competitor – navigating all three segments – before moving forward with a purchase. Because of the diversity of Last Mile Advertising, local advertisers need to be engaged in unprecedented ways across multiple platforms and channels.

Next month at our 2014 Local Search Association Conference, LSA|14, in Huntington Beach, Calif., we’ll focus on the evolution of Last Mile Advertising with presentations and panels featuring leaders in our space, most notably Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. We’ll also debut the winners of our inaugural Ad to Action Awards, which include this year’s most innovative local ad solutions.

What do you think of this new way of thinking about local?

Neg Norton is president of the Local Search Association.


Big things coming in local in 2015! Reserve your spot for Street Fight's double whammy of the best networking and best programming in the industry.
Click here for dates and details!

Newsletter

Get hyperlocal industry headlines in your inbox every morning. Subscribe to the Street Fight Daily newsletter.

See how brands compare in local presence across areas such as local SEO, data accuracy, social engagement and more. Presented by Where2GetIt and Street Fight. Click here to see the battle!

Free White Paper: Pay-Per-Call’s Role in Improving Marketing ROI

Call campaigns can make the phone ring — or alienate prospective customers. Learn how to get it right: Download "Pay-Per-Call's Role in Improving Marketing ROI."

Produced by Street Fight Insights for Soleo.

Free White Paper: Contextualization

Learn how to deliver better, revenue-driving consumer experiences. Download "Contextualization: Leveraging Location-Based Technology and Mobile to Drive Success for Brands."

Sponsored by Artisan Mobile.

Follow Us

Get the latest Street Fight news, information and analysis via Twitter and Facebook.

The Commerce Graph

The “Commerce Graph” is a new framework we have developed to think about the future of physical exchange. The model offers an alternative to the dominant narrative about the commerce landscape that frames digital networks as an adversary of physical exchange.

The $20 Billion Mobile Marketing Opportunity

Strategies and insights into the landscape of targeting options and how they deliver foot traffic and sales for SMBs.
Check out our 2013 report and get your copy today!

Twitter

© 2014 Street Fight.

Powered by WordPress. Hosting by Page.ly