It’s been said a million times over, but it’s as true now as it’s ever been: We’re addicted to our smartphones. Today, mobile usage accounts for 69% of the average consumer’s digital media time — that’s a lot of tweeting, surfing, texting, and emailing. We’re essentially walking around with little computers in our pockets almost every waking hour, and it’s not just changing the way we communicate with each other — it’s paving new frontiers in communication and providing deeper insight into our interests and behavior.
If any one industry is primed to benefit from the ubiquitous use of smartphones, it’s franchise marketing. Franchise brands, faced with the challenge of scaling national messaging to the local level and driving in-store foot traffic, would benefit greatly from the use of localized programmatic advertising — particularly through a tactic known as geo-fencing. What is geo-fencing, exactly? In short, it’s a location-based mobile advertising technology employed through custom-drawn shapes on a map, but it’s capable of so much more than that. And as the technology continues to grow in use, as expected, its role within the franchise marketing space will only become more central.
Here are some of the ways franchise marketers can leverage our geo-fencing technology to reach new and existing customers.
When people look for nearby things to do, where do they look? Their smartphones, of course; studies have shown that 60% of all consumers seek out local information on their mobile devices. Fortunately, if you’re looking to reach those within a certain proximity to your franchise, you can draw a geo-fence around your business to target anyone in the designated area with location services enabled on their smartphone. This is a great option for restaurants, coffee shops, or any franchise in a prime location with a lot of foot traffic.
It’s been proven time and again: Repeat customers have much higher conversion rates than new, potential customers. If there were a way to target the most loyal prospects — those most likely to make a purchase — with advertising, it’d be a no-brainer, right? With geo-fencing, you can do just that. Simply draw a geo-fence around your brick-and-mortar location to target and deliver advertising to those who have visited your business at any point in the last 30 days. This is an especially useful tactic for franchises that offer special promotions and loyalty offers to repeat customers.
Similarly, franchisers can advertise to those who have visited a competing location — a process known as conquesting. These are some of the most logical people to target since they’ve already shown interest in a similar product, making conquesting an invaluable strategy for franchises seeking to highlight a price-match guarantee or other features and benefits that make their product superior to their competitors’.
Popular hangouts for your customers, places that indicate a relevant interest or need for your product or service, are also ideal spots for a franchise to geo-fence. For instance, a sporting goods shop could target the local tennis courts, or a hotel could advertise to people at the airport — virtually any location with a high concentration of potential customers is fair game.
One of our most effective advertising solutions, event targeting involves capturing a custom audience of likeminded individuals based on their visit to a specific geo-fenced event location during a scheduled day and time frame, and then advertising to that same audience at a later date. Trade shows, sporting events, music festivals, fundraisers — any event that might be of interest to your customers is an opportunity to build a dynamic audience and target those users with mobile display ads at a later date. (For a deep dive into one of our event targeting geo-fence experiments, check out this blog.)
Measure, Report & Analyze
All the above tactics can help spread awareness and drive foot traffic to your business, but attributing marketing spend to those visits is just as imperative — especially in the franchise industry, which relies so heavily on driving and measuring in-store visits. With our advanced Geo-Fencing with Conversion Zone capabilities, advertisers can measure, with precision, the amount of physical traffic at their location that had previously seen one of their ads. What’s more, franchisers can see how effectively an ad campaign is performing by utilizing Simpli.fi’s Geo-Conversion Lift metrics, which show how much foot traffic was naturally converted and how much was influenced by an ad, and then report that information back to their corporate marketing teams.
Thanks to advancements in mobile and geo-fencing technology, this current Golden Age of Smartphones is yielding exciting new opportunities for franchise marketers — and these programmatic geo-fencing tactics are the best ways to ensure that your business is capitalizing on them. For more detailed insight into how geo-fencing could help your franchise business realize its untapped potential, download our Franchise Marketers Playbook for Localized Programmatic. And as always, feel free to give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.