In the constantly evolving world of marketing, there’s always room to improve. The beginning of a new year is a good time to re-evaluate your current marketing strategy and find areas for growth. To help you get started, we’ll examine the top four localized marketing tactics your multi-location business needs to be deploying. 

1. Focus efforts on the top platforms

Two platforms that all multi-location marketers should be present on are Google My Business (GMB) and Facebook. Research from our State of the Market Report found that Facebook continues to be the top platform for localized marketing with the highest count of locations connected, with more than double the location pages connected via its platform than its nearest competitor.

Google My Business (GMB) is the second most used platform by multi-location marketers on SOCi, and the number of locations connected has increased steadily since the start of 2019. Facebook currently has more than 34,000 multi-location businesses connected. GMB’s numbers have doubled over the past year with almost 20,000 multi-location businesses connected. 

You may be thinking to yourself, how can I use this information? Multi-location businesses are using both Facebook and GMB as their main marketing platforms. As a marketer, you should ensure that your business is doing the same. Facebook and GMB have both search and social functionalities, allowing you to speak to your target audience while also giving them the ability to interact with your business through ratings, reviews, and Q&A. 

2. Hone in on voice search 

One of the biggest trends we’ve seen recently, which will continue increasing in 2020, is the use of voice search through mobile devices and smart speakers, think Amazon Alexa or Google Home. From 2008 to 2016, Google voice searches increased 35x what they previously were. And it’s estimated that there will be more than 21.4 million smart speakers in the U.S. by the end of 2020, therefore signaling the voice search trend will only continue to increase.

 Because voice searches are still relatively new to the marketing world, many marketers haven’t yet incorporated them into their marketing strategy – this is where you can stay ahead of the competition. There are a few things you should keep in mind when creating a strategy for search. 

For instance, voice searches are typically in the form of a question or command. When it comes to voice search, people often use more words in a conversational manner. Instead of typing “Best haircuts near me,” they might say “Where is the best place I can get my haircut near me?” Knowing this, review your keyword plan to ensure it includes phrases and long-tail keywords that may be used in a voice search. 

Voice searches also only display one result, rather than a page of results like Google. Your multi-location business should ensure that your GMB and Facebook pages are up to date and active so it can have a better chance of being the first result for relevant searches.  

3. Test different types of content

Oftentimes, marketers produce the same type of content repeatedly without analyzing whether or not it’s effective. 2020 is the year for marketers to explore other content types! Mixing up content allows your multi-location business to connect with different audiences and develop a strong content library that will help boost your SEO

Research indicates that videos out-perform any other type of content on Facebook, and long-form research pieces tend to perform better than a typical blog post. While there’s nothing wrong with a social post that includes a link to a blog post and a line of descriptive text, there are other ways to engage your audience. 

Other types of content to experiment with include: 

  • Interactive content
  • Stories/Testimonials
  • GIFs
  • One-pagers
  • Infographics
  • Short animated videos

If you create a content plan that includes a variety of content mentioned above, your audience will become more engaged.

Once you’ve created a content plan, it’s time to start brainstorming which platforms you should promote the content on. As previously mentioned, Facebook is currently the biggest social platform where consumers are following brands, and GMB is releasing more and more features that align it with a social site, such as Google Posts. While Facebook and GMB are critical for your multi-location business, Instagram shouldn’t be overlooked. Instagram’s compound annual growth rate (CAGR) has grown by 23 percent over the past year, which makes it an important social platform to watch. 

By testing different types of content and how they perform on each platform, you will be able to better understand where your multi-location business should focus its efforts. 

4. Implement chatbots and interactive communication

Chatbots and real-time communication are the future of marketing. Consumers expect businesses to respond faster than ever – which is where chatbots can help. Chatbots and other real-time communication efforts provide consumers with a more personalized experience and help retain engagement.

Let’s take a look at the benefits that chatbots provide for both consumers and multi-location businesses. Clearly, it’s a win-win situation.

Benefits of chatbots for consumers

  • Ability to ask questions about products or services
  • Opportunity to leave feedback about their experience
  • Receive real-time responses 

Benefits of chatbots for your multi-location business

  • Ability to interact with consumers in real-time
  • Immediately receive feedback about a product or service 
  • Option to collect data from consumers that can then be used for marketing and sales purposes 

Now that you understand why chatbots are an essential marketing tactic, how do you get started? Creating a chatbot for your multi-location business is easy! Find a tool to integrate the chatbot into your website, and with a Facebook Business page, you automatically have Facebook Messenger.  

Is your marketing strategy optimized? 

Out of the four essential tactics we just covered, how many has your multi-location business planned for in your localized marketing strategy? To ensure that you’re staying on top of your localized marketing game, it’s important to include the top platforms, a keyword strategy for voice search, a variety of localized content types, and chatbots. There’s always room to improve your localized marketing strategy and stay ahead of the curve!

Learn how SOCi can help take your
localized marketing to the next level.