5 Platforms SMBs Can Use to Monitor Local Competitors

Today’s top competitive intelligence platforms give SMBs a way to go far beyond tracking keywords and mentions. These hyperlocal tools give merchants and service providers a way to identify the most important players in their local markets and analyze which of those businesses’ marketing strategies is producing the greatest returns…

Case Study: Nonprofit Uses Hyperlocal Content to Reach Families

What started out as an online cookie sale in 2008 turned into much more for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, when the pediatric cancer research nonprofit formed a partnership with hyperlocal content network Macaroni Kid to promote its local bake sales across the country in 2010…

6 Marketplace Platforms for Local Buyers

Limited-time promotions are an effective way to generate immediate customer demand, but what happens once the hype is over and the deal is complete? To counteract their one-and-done reputations and give merchants a way to extend their promotions, a number of hyperlocal companies are developing local marketplace platforms with more opportunities for long-tail marketing…

Case Study: Walmart Expands Mobile Efforts With Scan & Go App

The retail giant isn’t trying to dissuade customers from using their smartphones while they shop. In fact, the retailer is beefing up the carrier signals inside its stores to make it easier for customers to get online. Instead, the company is combating the threat of showrooming by encouraging customers to fill their screens with its own mobile application.

6 Tools for Creating Performance-Based Offers

As pure-play daily deals sites struggle to remain attractive to local merchants, a new model for offers is beginning to emerge. Rather than giving blanket discounts on general merchandise — a hallmark of the original Groupon deals — brand advertisers are increasingly opting to use performance-based offers as a way to drive traffic without necessarily hurting the bottom line. Here are six tools that merchants can use to create performance-based marketing offers…

Restaurant Chain Looks For Location-Specific Trends in Online Reviews

Keeping up with customer reviews and social media chatter can be especially difficult for a national chain. As the director of digital marketing at Houlihan’s, a “polished casual” restaurant chain with 85 locations, Natalie Bass is responsible for making sure the company is being found online and communicating with customers through all the most popular digital channels…

5 Tips for Building a Smarter Geofence

The number of advertisers using “geo-aware” technology in their mobile ad campaigns jumped from 17% in 2011 to 36% in 2012, according to a report by Verve Mobile, and yet there is still confusion in the marketplace over what makes a geofencing campaign useful, and when location targeting is necessary to achieve a high ROI. Here are five strategies for creating a smarter, more strategic geofencing campaign…

Case Study: Steakhouse Takes a More-Is-More Approach to Marketing

At Franklin Steakhouse, manager Frank Oliver is always on the lookout for ways to enmesh his restaurant with the local community. In addition to tried-and-true tactics like partnering with neighboring businesses and hosting fundraisers, Oliver is taking a hyperlocal approach to digital marketing through platforms like Facebook and Yelp…

6 Platforms For Booking Local Services

Platforms that allow consumers to book appointments with service-based professionals (like plumbers, electricians, and mechanics) are disrupting the way local services have traditionally been scheduled. Here are six platforms working to change the way local, service-based businesses schedule appointments with consumers…

Case Study: Nationwide Property Manager Uses PPC, SEO to Boost ROI

At Lincoln Property Company, vice president Jennifer Staciokas takes a holistic approach to marketing the 140,000+ apartment units her company currently manages. By creating independent community websites focused on the local areas that Lincoln Property serves, along with aggressive PPC, retargeting and SEO campaigns managed by ReachLocal, the management firm has been able to increase conversion rates and boost the number of signed leases…

6 Post-Couponing Tools for Merchants

Customer return rates on traditional coupons are notoriously low. So rather than saying goodbye to the customers they fought hard to acquire, SMBs are increasingly offering follow-up deals, known as “post-couponing.” Post-couponing platforms give businesses a way to drive incremental revenue by providing additional value to customers who have redeemed mobile coupons. Here are six platforms that provide post-couponing tools for businesses of all sizes…

Case Study: Duane Reade Uses Brand Advocates for Local Campaigns

Rather than relying solely on traditional advertising to promote the company’s recent rebranding efforts, the drugstore chain’s online/public relations manager Calvin Peters has expanded the company’s social media efforts and created what he calls a “VIP blogger team.” Peters has partnered with bloggers with online communities centered around the New York metro area to generate buzz and organic media in the form of user-generated content…

5 Strategies for SMBs Using Social Gifting Apps

Translating Facebook fans and Twitter followers into actual sales is a challenge that even the largest brands are still working to overcome. To break through the clutter and get noticed, small businesses are increasingly using social gifting platforms to send gift cards and physical items to online fans. Here are five tips from the experts on what small businesses can do to ensure a high ROI on any social gifting promotions…

Case Study: Restaurant Chain Uses Mobile Program to Target Nearby Customers

At 54th Street Grill & Bar, a regional chain with 19 locations in Missouri, Kansas, Illinois, and Texas, marketing director Kelly Reid used a mobile loyalty platform called Front Flip to send discounted offers to consumers who’d visited businesses within a five-mile-radius of any 54th Street locations without checking-in at one of her restaurants, and had managers ask those customers why they hadn’t come in before. Here’s more about what she learned….

Case Study: Cumberland Farms Partners With PayPal on Mobile App

In April 2012, Cumberland Farms teamed up with PayPal to launch a mobile payment application, which allows customers to pay for gas through their smartphones. In the 11 months since the app debuted, repeat usage statistics have been in the 88th percentile, a metric senior brand strategy manager Kate Ngo says shows how convenient a mobile payment platform can be…

8 Strategies for Generating Buzz Around a New Hyperlocal Platform

Entrepreneurs need more than just a great idea to launch a successful hyperlocal business — they need a way to promote it. Here are eight strategies for generating PR and promoting a new hyperlocal platform, delivered by executives who’ve been in that very same position…

5 Business Intelligence Platforms for Hyperlocals

One of the fastest ways for hyperlocal marketers and sales teams to improve their success rates when pitching to SMBs is by identifying businesses most likely to be receptive to their offerings. A number of recently introduced business intelligence platforms can make that process a little bit easier and help marketers leverage online data to pinpoint businesses that are new and thriving…

Case Study: Bakery Relies on Hyperlocal Press, Yelp for New Customers

When Donna Lawson first opened the doors at Stuffed Cakes, she ran a series of daily deal promotions through CBS Local and Urban Dealight to spread the word about her Seattle-based bakery. Now two years later, Lawson relies primarily on press mentions on hyperlocal sites like the West Seattle Blog, as well as positive reviews on Yelp, to get new customers coming through the door…

7 Cloud-Based POS Systems for SMBs

Cloud-based POS platforms differentiate themselves from one another with advanced integrations with digital loyalty programs, accounting tools, and mechanisms for creating gift cards and coupons, in addition to varying price structures. Here are seven POS systems, each with its own features for merchants…

Case Study: Jelmar Reaches Younger Demo With Location-Based Promotion

The cleaning products manufacturer ran a promotion last year with inMarket’s CheckPoints mobile app, which rewarded customers for scanning CLR and CLR Bath & Kitchen products with their smartphones. As a result, Jelmar saw an immediate uptick in sales at stores where the mobile promotion ran…