Are you a marketer interested in getting started with location-based marketing? If so, then you’re in the right place.
In recent years, there’s been a huge increase in the number of people using mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. And with this, location-based data has quickly become one of the most important tactics used by marketers to target the right audience at the right time.
However, not everyone knows about this newly discovered marketing strategy, or how it can be used to efficiently capture an audience.
So with that said, in the following article, we’ll be taking a look at the basics of IP Geo location-based marketing covering everything you’ll need to know about getting started with this highly-effective marketing strategy.
But that’s not to say that location-based marketing is a good strategy for every business out there, it’s entirely dependent on where you’ve chosen to run your business. So keep reading, and I’ll help you get a better idea of whether or not this location-based tactic is right for you.
Basic Location-Based Marketing Terminology
As with any type of marketing, location-based marketing can be done using a variety of different techniques. And although the following strategic terms are similar in practice, they each have very specific meanings and should never be used interchangeably.
Also referred to as geo-marketing, geo-targeting refers to the act of creating an audience based on historical data of real-world visits to a specific business location or geographic point of interest.
In turn, these “geo-targeted” audiences can be used to deliver highly-relevant ads or digital content based on location, rather than other demographics such as age, gender, or recent website visits.
So, for example, if a certain audience is seen frequenting a dining establishment, they can be identified as diners. Or if they are seen at a music store, they can be identified as musicians or music lovers.
In the end, creating an audience using geo-targeting helps marketers learn more about the real-life habits of consumers. In other words, geo-targeting is less speculative and significantly more precise than traditional forms of audience building.
Geo-fencing refers to the act of creating a virtual boundary around a specific location. As a result, marketers are able to serve content and ads to any audience who might enter into this “geo-fenced” area.
When it comes to geo-fencing, there are two approaches that can be taken.
First, marketers can use a radius surrounding a specific location or point of interest to create a geo-fence. Then, by tracking any devices that enter into this radius, marketers can analyze who is actually visiting the chosen location.
However, there’s one problem with this tactic: a radial geo-fence might accidentally pick up pedestrians or other passers-by on the street, mistaking them for consumers who’ve actually visited the location, which is why this next approach tends to be more effective.
Secondly, a polygon can be used to create a geo-fence surrounding a building’s exact footprint.
This is significantly more precise than using a radius since marketers will be able to tell exactly whether or not a consumer has entered into the building’s footprint or not.
The only downside to using polygons is if you’re trying to create an audience in a densely populated area, where the store you want to market is located below a residential apartment complex.
In this case, it’s going to be impossible to differentiate who is entering into the store from who is entering into the apartment complex.
Next up we have geo-conquesting, which is similar to the previous two strategies. However, geo-conquesting is a slightly sneakier way to perform location-based marketing.
When we talk about geo-conquesting, we’re referring to the practice of creating an audience based on visitors to a competitor’s location in hopes of converting the competitor’s customers into your own.
So, for example, if a Ford dealership wanted to win over customers from Dodge, they might build a geo-conquesting audience based on any consumers who’ve recently visited the competing Dodge dealer’s location.
The Benefits Of Location-Based Marketing
The reason that location-based marketing is so effective is that marketers are able to get a better understanding of what a consumer’s interests are based on their real-world habits.
Compare this to traditional forms of targeting, such as user demographics or website history, and you can easily see why location-based marketing is more effective.
Location-based marketing gives marketers significantly more confidence in the relevancy of their campaigns simply because they know the consumer has actually been to a physical location, likely in order to make a purchase or to browse a specific type of product/service.
Plus, location-based analytics can also be used to learn more about when or how often a target consumer visits a specific location. In turn, businesses and their marketing teams are able to work at improving customer satisfaction based on very specific information about their audience.
Lastly, like other forms of marketing, by using location-based strategies, marketers can keep track of whether their efforts have caused an increase or decrease in visitors. In turn, allowing for better decision making based on real-world analysis of their audience.
In the end, location-based marketing is more of exact science, as opposed to being purely a form of theoretical speculation.
The Downside To Location-Based Marketing
Unfortunately, due to privacy concerns, a huge number of consumers disable any type of location-based tracking on their devices. And at the same time, there are still many people on the planet who simply don’t have a smartphone.
In other words, it’s going to be impossible to target these types of people using a location-based strategy.
Plus, location-based marketing relies heavily on accurate location data.
So when people are using VPNs on their device, or the collected data just isn’t reliable, geo-targeting becomes significantly less appropriate, and chances are, you’ll end up serving ads and content to the wrong audiences.
So, although location-based marketing can be extremely effective, it’s not going to be the most ideal strategy for every business out there.
But in the end, when used and implemented properly, the data collected via location-based marketing can prove to be extremely helpful in learning about and segmenting your audiences properly.