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In the premier challenge, Yogurtland schools Pinkberry
Maintaining a strong local presence is no easy task amid an explosion of ways in which consumers connect with businesses: search, listings, reviews, online ads, bookings, payments and more. In this debut analysis, the spotlight was put on two of the largest frozen yogurt chains to see which brand is doing a better job of reaching out to local consumers over digital platforms.
To determine the outcome, the battle was scored using data across various channels* including Google, Bing, Facebook, Yelp, Foursquare and Where2GetIt‘s Social Data Matching (SDM) technology. Data from these sources was rolled into the Brandify analytics engine to test the two companies’ local digital marketing footprint to determine a Brand Score.
The Brand Score is calculated with an algorithm that currently consists of 250 variables grouped into six pillars: Data Quality, Local SEO, Reviews, Social Engagement, Local Advertising, and Competitor Benchmarking. The data to determine Yogurtland and Pinkberry’s online presence strength was pulled in August and is reflected year to date.
The fight was close, but in the end, Yogurtland‘s stronger showing on search results, coupled with its cleaner location data, made it the clear winner. More highlights from the results, below, and view the infographic for more.
Street Fight and Where2GetIt will publish a new Brand Battle each month.
*Other channels sources included in this analyses: Yellow Pages, MerchantCircle, Pinterest, Twitter and YouTube.
Yogurtland and Pinkberry are a perfect match for this month’s “Brand Battle.” They are both based in southern California, and are each less than 10 years old (Pinkberry launched in 2005; Yogurtland followed a year later). Yogurtland brings 244 locations across the U.S. to Pinkberry’s 142. (The data uses median scores to evaluate the winners.) They don’t just battle one another; the category is extremely crowded, with companies from TCBY and Tasti-D-Lite to lesser knowns such as Orange Leaf or Tutti Frutti.
Round 1 – Data Quality
WHY YOGURTLAND WON: Data Quality is key to establishing a strong online brand identity and consumer confidence, potentially influencing their path-to-purchase. For this analysis, Where2GetIt used location data obtained from a major core data provider. They did minor data cleansing so that the analysis would reflect the way the data is currently being distributed. Yogurtland’s NAP (name, address, phone number) analyses showed that across the six pillars of local presence, its local data was 20% more accurate than that of Pinkberry. Further, Yogurtland’s local listings presence was stronger (defined by reach, accuracy, and freshness) by 4%.
Round 2 – Local SEO
WHY YOGURTLAND WON: The search evaluation looked primarily at four key components — local pages, locator, website, and on-page factors, including page rankings across Google Maps and Bing Maps results for the keyword “Frozen Yogurt Shop” and “dessert shop.” Any result out of the top 10 was considered “Not Found.” Pinkberry surfaced in the first position in the top results more than 42% of the time, slightly more than Yogurtland’s 39%, yet Yogurtland dominated positions 2-10. Yogurtland’s locator and website is ranked higher due to architecture, usability, SEO factors, content, and design. Yogurtland’s weakest point in its local SEO strategy is the absence of local pages; this is the only place where Pinkberry exceeds Yogurtland.
Round 3 – Reviews
WHY YOGURTLAND WON: The digital masses love Yogurtland. Three-quarters of reviews written online give the company four or five stars. That’s substantially better than Pinkberry, which saw only 32% of reviews with a four-star rating or better. A more in-depth analysis on sentiment was also evaluated. The measurable variables included six different types of experiences a consumer could possibly have at a yogurt shop, including service, cleanliness, freshness, friendliness, flavor and time spent in line. Overall, the customer experience for a Yogurtland consumer was more positive, especially across “flavor” and “freshness.” Volume, rating and sentiment determined this round’s winner.
Round 4 – Social Engagement
WHY YOGURTLAND WON: Yogurtland has a more active community on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest with more check-ins, shares and post ‘likes’ than its competitor, even though its total reach is smaller. With an overall fan base of 450,000 brand advocates (to Pinkberry’s 750,000) Yogurtland shares more content than its competitor and reaches its consumers more frequently. Part of Yogurtland’s content strategy is creativity, which is a big hit with their consumers, for example, its “Fan Choice Awards.” The one area Pinkberry betters Yogurtland is on Foursquare, where it has nearly 80% more Foursquare users per location than Yogurtland. Overall, Yogurtland has a 69% higher engagement score across Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
Round 5 – Local Advertising
WHY YOGURTLAND WON: Customers are increasingly looking online for local businesses. Local advertising is a great vehicle to generate brand awareness and drive local consumers into store locations. It appears from Brandify analysis that Yogurtland invests a small budget in search advertising to promote its franchisee’s program at the national level not to attract local customers to its stores. Pinkberry did not appear to be doing much advertising at all. While we determine Yogurtland to be the winner, they too do not take full advantage of the power of local, mobile and advertising.
Round 6 – Competitor Benchmarking
WHY YOGURTLAND WON: National brands, regardless of their size, are all competing at local. Benchmarking the top competition not only nationally but locally gives brand managers the insights they need to better compete and win real estate across local digital search. Brandify analysis determined that at the local level, Yogurtland and Pinkberry each have about twelve competitors. Each chain’s top competitor was the other one. They both beat out Cold Stone Creamery, Baskin-Robbins, and locals like Tutti-Frutti Frozen Yogurt. Yogurtland wins due to not only ranking higher than Pinkberry nationally, but locally. Yogurtland also won the rest of the competitive benchmarks: local SEO, data quality, reviews, engagement and local advertising.
Where2GetIt Recommendations: Yogurtland
Yogurtland scores well in all areas, but no one is perfect. In the area of local search, Where2GetIt recommends that Yogurtland beef up its locator, create local pages, and link the locator to those pages. Second, to invest on local advertising. Local advertising is the most cost-effective way to find new customers and drive them physically to your local stores. Specific recommendations:
- Create campaigns by location that allow you to create unique ad messages, local keywords, bid strategies per location. (W2GI does not believe on “One Size Fits All”)
- Apply radius targeting around every single store location, so you are avoiding wasting budget on clicks that will not drive any ROI. (Geo-fencing technology)
These two simple tasks will boost Yogurtland’s local digital presence dramatically!
Where2GetIt Recommendations: Pinkberry
Pinkberry, put up a great fight. Even though it has only 142 locations nationwide, the company is better performing than brands like Cold Stone Creamery (with 1800+ locations), especially at the local level. Still, Yogurtland has it beat, so Where2GetIt recommends that Pinkberry:
1 . IMPROVE DATA QUALITY across the big six. For the amount of locations they have, there is a highly disproportionate amount of inaccurate information. From a listings perspective, they need to apply the same listings accuracy found on Yelp (across this specific channel they do better than Yogurtland) onto other channels like Facebook and Foursquare.
2 . SPRUCE UP LOCAL PAGES. They already have the upper hand over Yogurtland because they have local pages, which Yogurtland doesn’t. Two key elements for local pages are title tags and on page content. One industry best practice when it comes to local page title tags is to include a keyword, address and brand name. Pinkberry misses the mark here; instead of electing to include a tag line, “Taste Worth Obsessing Over,” and the words “Pinkberry Location” as well as the name of the shopping center where the Pinkberry is located, the keyword “Frozen Yogurt” could and should have been included. In addition to an absence of keywords in the title tag, you can’t find “Frozen Yogurt “anywhere on the pages.
3. ENGAGE. Yogurtland does. Notice, Pinkberry has a greater fan base, yet its followers are less active. Engagement is about quality, relevancy and creativity. Engagement is not only applicable to social, but to reviews and advertising as well. Without incentives for local audiences to engage with the brand, we have dramatically seen the effect of it across reviews. Advertising with powerful CTAs will drive consumers to local shops, it is up to that shop to give consumers the proper experience and to capture it- engage friends, engage.
October Brand Battle Winner: Yogurtland
Brandify is transforming the way businesses connect to consumers by leveraging location technology and offering unrivaled personal service. Brandify has helped hundreds of brands understand and improve their local presence. Current and past clients include In-N-Out Burger, True Value, Jo-Ann Fabrics, Applebee’s, Black & Decker, and more. For more information about Brandify, go to brandify.com.