14 Tips for Local Marketing on Mobile

A recent study says 47 percent of small retailers struggle to keep up with mobile marketing trends. Here are 14 tips for local marketing on mobile that will help.

Tips for Local Mobile Marketing

Master the Basics

You can’t put the cart before the horse when dealing with local mobile marketing. Making sure your website is updated and sound is the first step. Your social media channels need to be updated too. Looking at your Google profile is also important.

“Look at all those things including pictures and logos before you start a marketing campaign to make sure they’re airtight,” says Marty McDonald, Co-Founder and Chief Strategist at Bad Rhino, a Philadelphia marketing agency. McDonald spoke with Small Business Trends recently to share some local mobile marketing advice to small businesses.

Localize Your Content

Focusing on what makes any area special is a big part of local marketing. That said you need to be sure whatever kind of content you’re pushing highlights this.

For example, a blog post about the top five restaurants in a specific area gives search engines another way to match your business with that locale.  That goes for all the different kinds of content you work with.

Make Sure You’ve Got Mobile Response Capabilities

Your customers want to buy things, leave reviews and contact you from their smart phones. You need to be ready with the right technology. Making sure your website is mobile friendly helps.

Enable Mobile Payments

Make sure you can take payments from a mobile device. Consumers have become more comfortable purchasing items off their mobile devices and small businesses need to keep up. There are traditional options here like PayPal, newer entries like Apple Pay and a host of choices in between.

Tips for Local Marketing on Mobile

Offer Deals

McDonald points out how familiar technology makes offering incentives easier.

“There’s a lot of ways you can work text messaging into this mobile strategy,” he says. McDonald also recommends looking for software to help you target local niche markets with deals and discounts.

Utilize Location-Based Services

Leverage location-based services like Foursquare or Google My Business to promote your business. These services allow you to create special offers for customers who check in at your location, thereby encouraging foot traffic and repeat visits.

Optimize for Voice Search

With the increasing use of digital assistants like Siri and Google Assistant, optimizing for voice search is becoming crucial. Ensure that your content incorporates conversational keywords and phrases that people are likely to use when speaking, rather than typing.

Create Mobile-Exclusive Offers

Develop special offers that are exclusively available to mobile users. This can be promoted through your social media channels or mobile ads, creating a sense of exclusivity and urgency that encourages immediate action.

Implement SMS Marketing

SMS marketing can be an effective tool for reaching local customers directly on their mobile devices. You can send timely messages about sales, special events, or new product arrivals. Just ensure that your SMS campaigns comply with legal guidelines and that customers have opted in to receive these messages.

Offer Customer Loyalty Rewards

As you might expect, there’s quite a variety of apps to choose from. You should look for one that folds into your industry. For example, a restaurant reservation app can offer some kind of dining rewards program.

One caveat here.  Regardless of the one you choose, make sure customers can opt in and out quickly and easily.

Join Mobile Directories

These supply another one of the advantages you’re looking for.  The trick is to look beyond the obvious ones like Google Local and Yelp to see if there’s something more tailored to your locale.

Tips for Local Marketing on Mobile

Make Google Landing Pages

“If you have multiple locations, you’ll want a Google landing page for each” McDonald says. Don’t forget to use the keywords related to your search, the name of your city and the Zip Code.

“Make sure these are optimized for local search on mobile,” he says.

Track Your Progress

You’ll want to track your progress once everything is optimized. However, knowing what to look for is critical to the big picture.  Look at more than just clicks. Make sure you’re ranking for the keywords you’ve decided on too.

Simple online surveys are a great way to reinforce the trends you see from analytics. Asking people how they found you can even provide new keyword ideas.

Keep at It

Persistence is the key to local marketing on mobile.

“Once you have the analytics, don’t quit,” McDonald says. “You need to do this for longer than just one month to make sure you’re doing everything correctly.”

He also says too many small businesses don’t take the necessary in depth look at their analytics.

Tips for Local Marketing on Mobile

Challenges of Mobile Marketing for Small Retailers

Despite the potential benefits, many small retailers struggle to keep up with the fast-paced world of mobile marketing. Here are some of the challenges they face:

  • Limited Resources: Small retailers often have limited budgets and manpower to invest in mobile marketing strategies, making it challenging to compete with larger businesses.
  • Technical Expertise: Understanding and implementing mobile marketing technologies and tools can be daunting for small retailers without dedicated IT teams or marketing experts.
  • Rapidly Changing Trends: Mobile marketing trends evolve rapidly, and it can be difficult for small retailers to stay updated and adapt quickly to changing consumer preferences.
  • Data Privacy and Security: Collecting and handling customer data for mobile marketing campaigns raises concerns about data privacy and security, which can be overwhelming for small retailers to manage effectively.
  • Targeting the Right Audience: Identifying and targeting the right audience for their products or services can be a struggle for small retailers, leading to ineffective mobile marketing efforts.
  • Integrating Offline and Online Strategies: Coordinating offline and online marketing efforts, especially in a local context, can be a challenge for small retailers trying to create a seamless customer experience.
  • Measuring ROI: Determining the return on investment (ROI) for mobile marketing initiatives can be complex for small retailers, particularly without advanced analytics tools and expertise.
  • Mobile Optimization: Ensuring their websites and other digital assets are mobile-friendly and optimized for various devices can be technically challenging for small retailers without access to specialized web development resources.
  • Competition from E-commerce Giants: Small retailers often face stiff competition from large e-commerce giants, which can make it difficult to stand out in the mobile marketing landscape.
  • Keeping Up with Consumer Behavior: Understanding and adapting to changes in consumer behavior, such as the shift towards mobile shopping and purchasing, poses challenges for small retailers seeking to provide relevant and engaging mobile experiences.
Challenges of Mobile Marketing for Small Retailers
Limited Resources
Technical Expertise
Rapidly Changing Trends
Data Privacy and Security
Targeting the Right Audience
Integrating Offline and Online Strategies
Measuring ROI
Mobile Optimization
Competition from E-commerce Giants
Keeping Up with Consumer Behavior

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why is it important to master the basics before starting local mobile marketing?

It’s crucial to ensure your website, social media channels, and Google profile are updated and optimized before launching a marketing campaign. This ensures a strong foundation for your mobile marketing efforts.

How can I make my content more localized for better local marketing?

Highlight what makes your area special in your content. For example, write blog posts about top places or attractions in your locality to improve search engine visibility.

What mobile response capabilities should I have in place for my customers?

Customers want to be able to buy products, leave reviews, and contact you from their smartphones. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly and that you offer options for mobile engagement.

How can I enable mobile payments for my business?

Ensure you can accept payments from mobile devices by integrating payment options like PayPal or Apple Pay into your system.

How can I attract more customers through mobile marketing?

Consider offering deals and incentives through text messaging or targeted software to attract local customers with discounts and rewards.

Are there specific mobile directories I should join for local marketing?

Look beyond popular directories like Google Local and Yelp and find niche directories that cater to your specific industry and location.

Why do I need Google landing pages for each of my locations?

Having dedicated landing pages for each location improves your local search optimization on mobile devices, increasing your visibility to potential customers.

How can I track the success of my mobile marketing efforts?

Monitor your progress using analytics and metrics beyond just clicks. Look for keywords you’re ranking for and consider using online surveys to gain insights from your customers.

What is the key to successful local marketing on mobile?

Persistence is vital. Don’t give up after a short time; continuously track, analyze, and optimize your mobile marketing strategies for long-term success.

Marketing On Mobile Photo via Shutterstock

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About the Author: Rayne Chancer