This Week's Question: I keep seeing ads for local businesses on my phone. How are they doing that?
A question I'm starting to get asked more and more is, "Sometimes I see ads being displayed on my cell phone for local businesses. How are they doing that?"
I know it feels like you're being watched on your phone. Well, it's kind of because you are, and yes, it's completely creepy. And we start to expect this kind of technology from large companies like Amazon and Google, but when we start to see it for small businesses it kind of makes you wonder: how are they doing that? How are they displaying ads that seem like they're just for me? If you want to know more about this, keep watching!
Hi, I'm Tom Malesic, founder and President of EZMarketing, and you're watching Ask EZ. This is where small business owners go to get real answers to their marketing questions.
You're being tracked
You already know this but your smartphone has allowed you to have a GPS in your pocket, it knows where you are all the time. So unless you intentionally go in and disable those location services, you're being tracked. And we know that 90% of us never disable these services because half the stuff on our cell phones won't work when we do that. Because of this cool technology marketers are now able to give ads to you based specifically on where you are now, or where you've been.
What is geofencing
A little fun fact; more people worldwide have a mobile phone than have a toothbrush. This location-based marketing it's called geofencing. It puts a virtual fence around any geographic location that we choose, so that anyone who enters that location will now have the opportunity to see your ad.
The ads appear within apps that you already have installed on your phone, maybe it's a news app or the weather app. Sounds cool, but wait it gets better! 53% of shoppers have visited a specific retailer after receiving a location-based ad. 91% of smartphone owners have purchased something after seeing a relevant ad. And locally targeted ads have double the click-through rate as regular ads do.
How do you use geofencing?
So how do you use geofencing?
The first way to use it is to geofence a competitor. Let's say you're a local hardware store, and you want a geofence some of the big-box stores like Home Depot or Lowe's, now we can display ads for your store to anyone who goes into those two big-box stores.
2. Complementary Businesses
The second way is to geofence complementary businesses. Let's say you're a financial planner and you want to target wealthy people. Well, where do wealthy people go? They go to golf courses, they go to country clubs, they go to upscale restaurants, we can geofence those locations and display your ads to them.
Another way to use geofencing is for recruiting. So let's say you're a medical practice and you're looking to hire more doctors and nurses, we can geofence local hospitals, some of your competitors, or even some nursing schools to display your recruiting ads to.
The last way to use geofencing is for events. Let's say you attend a trade show, you can now geofence that trade show just on the days that you're there and display your ads directly to the attendees. And because geofencing is digital, we have access to amazing statistics. We can show you how many times your ad was displayed, how many times they clicked on it and went to your website, and the coolest thing is we can tell you that they saw your ad and showed up in your store. How cool is that!
Here's your homework:
I want you to identify where does your ideal customer physically spend time, where they live, where do they work, where do they shop, what hobbies do they have, and if you can think of precise locations that they go to, geofencing is probably for you.