Effective Geotargeting Strategies to Increase ROI

You can maximize the effectiveness of your digital ad campaigns with geotargeting which allows you to target consumers where they are.

Business owners are increasingly turning to digital advertising. According to a recent Internet Advertising Revenue report released by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), digital advertising spending rose to $14.9 billion in the United States in 2014, setting a new record. While desktop search remained the biggest overall ad spend segment, mobile ad spending continues to steadily grow, with spending totaling $12.5 billion during FY 2014, a 76% increase from the prior year total of $7.1 billion. David Silverman, a Partner at PwC stated, “High double digit growth in mobile advertising is a reflection of the continued shift in consumer behavior away from desktop and towards mobile devices. A prominent rise in Social, a significant mobile activity, is driving growth in advertising revenue as consumers spend more time connected.”

Digital advertising costs are also rising, with AdWords CPC going up 40% between 2012 and 2014. Likewise, the demand for ROI increases. This is where geotargeting can help, by allowing you to find your audience right where they live, work or play. You can eliminate spending on low performing areas and focus only on regions with the most potential for success. Not only will you be able to save on expenses, but also increase revenues by strengthening efforts on high performing regions. A highly-customized user experience trumps a generic one, and geotargeting provides you with an exceptional foundation for segmenting your audience by region. You can customize your ad copy and landing pages to provide users with a targeted and relevant message.

Geotargeting Techniques

Supplement ad campaigns with geotargeting – Consider using geotargeting/IP targeting to complement your ad campaign, whether you are running an email marketing campaign or direct mail. Geotargeting/IP targeting can be used together with offline information to help you target relevant audiences. IP targeting brings the effectiveness of your offline direct mail campaign into digital advertising by matching IP and real-world locations, ensuring that your ads will be seen by your target customers.

Target customers in a specified area – Businesses who are opening brick and mortar stores can take advantage of geotargeting by serving online ads to the households in close proximity. You can show residents in neighboring areas ads that offer “Exclusive Opening Day Rates”.

Advertise to specific customers in segments – Have a high-end salon in an area with communities whose residents vary in income levels? With the help of IP targeting, you can determine which neighborhoods have the most potential to respond and advertise to them.

Advertise special events with geotargeting – Let’s say a community college aims to get more enrollees for the following school year. You can hold “Community College Open House Weekends” to showcase special classes, certificate courses, vocational departments, and available associate’s degrees and target local households with direct online ads that go hand-in-hand with your direct mailers.

Offer exclusive promos to established customers – You already have your customers’ mailing addresses and already send direct mail, but you can go one step further and serve them digital ads for exclusive offers. Your customers’ offline data (postal address, geographical region or email address) can be matched to online customers so you can reach them easily.

Target customers already within your vicinity – With geotargeting, you can target potential customers who are already on the move, by serving specific ads based on their proximity to your store. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to provide promotional offers to people who are near your vicinity.

Serve ads based on the weather to maximize revenue – Because you know where your customers are, you also know the weather conditions at their location. Various businesses can leverage this knowledge (e.g. a cold rainy day) by serving relevant online ads: coffee shops by advertising hot coffee; apparel and footwear retail stores by advertising raincoats and rain boots.

Public affairs operations – Geotargeting can be a useful tool for reaching out to neighborhood groups and serving messages that target them specifically in order for them to get to know about you and your cause. Do you need help influencing people in neighboring areas with regards to recycling? Do you want people to learn about the merits of building a new shopping center in your district, such as new job opportunities for locals?

Political campaigning – You’ve heard of the phrase “All politics is local” – which sums up the principle that the success of a politician is directly related with his or her ability to understand and influence the issues of their constituents. (Source: Wikipedia) Political candidates can take advantage of IP targeting by sending out relevant messages to voters in particular districts.

Strengthen community relations – A May 2013 study by Cone Communications and Echo Research showed that 82 percent of U.S. citizens consider corporate social responsibility or CSR commitments in their day-to-day purchasing decisions, such as where to shop and what to buy. 88 percent of U.S. consumers also select products associated with social or environmental benefits. Businesses can use geotargeted ads in order to build relationships with their community, whether it’s donating part of your profits the local animal shelter, or rallying residents to join your company in volunteering time and effort to rebuilding a playground for local children.

There are various ways that you can put geotargeting technologies to work for you. With geotargeting, you have the ability to send messages to your potential customers that are tailor-made for them, increasing the chances of your campaign’s success.