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Time for marketing to go hyperlocal

Guest Author
28th Nov 2015
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With the flourishing startup culture across the country, the marketing industry is set to face its biggest makeover in decades. Although according to Pitch-Madison Media reports there is a 9.6% increase in spending on outdoor branding efforts, current times are a big challenge for an entrepreneur to chart out the right marketing strategies. There is an urgent need to empower startups with the marketing data and media options they have never used before. The time is ripe for hyperlocal to creep into the marketing and advertising industry as the biggest value addition to the startup ecosystem.

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Image Credits: Shutterstock

What hyperlocal means in marketing

What’s the use of a great ad shown to the wrong audience? Hyperlocal in marketing focusses on organising the unconventional media options in a localised environment. With increasing social hubs – apartments, tech parks, SEZs, coffee shops, food courts, hotels, restaurants, retail stores and club houses – there’s a surge in innovative advertising spaces targeting consumers at specific locations within a city. Hyperlocal marketing strategy utilises such untouched spaces to target consumers with appropriate context and content.

Recently, a marketing campaign for one of the emerging home décor companies of Bengaluru reached out specifically to women by branding the company in 20 retail stores, eight gymnasiums and 15 cafes in Whitefield, Bengaluru. Planned in a way to spend strategically on brand positioning and then brand recall, in a span of three months, this hyperlocal marketing campaign resulted not only in increased sales but also helped the company grow its social media reach organically by 25%.

Scope and reach of hyperlocal

The scope and reach of hyperlocal marketing is enormous. Consider a specific area of Whitefield within Bengaluru. Within an area of around 60 sq.km. it has more than 80 large apartments and 100 – 150 smaller residential complexes sheltering a total of more than 2,50,000 residents. It has at least 20 cafés, more than 50 major restaurants, four malls, three multiplexes, 30 gymnasiums and numerous retail stores. And Whitefield is not even as big as some of the major residential areas in other startup cities like Mumbai & Delhi.

Now, imagine a need for your venture to target consumers in Whitefield or Connaught Place or Powai and a hyperlocal solution that helps you do that. Eureka! That’s ‘hyperlocal advertising’ for you.

The challenges

The emerging hyperlocal marketing has its own challenges. Managing and observing the campaigns is the most challenging part in this format. Since an ideal hyperlocal marketing strategy will involve several mediums (cinema halls, cafes, apartments, gyms, stores etc.), it may require different messaging for every medium. Customised and thoughtful advertisement designs for all the ad spaces involved in a hyperlocal strategy is the challenging part that requires creativity.

Moreover, across the span of the campaign, tweaking the messaging on an ad space based on the audience response is a major challenge that requires a swift managing process. Since in hyperlocal marketing the results may or may not be visible very quickly, a regular observation of ad spaces is a must for increased efficiency.

The impact

Designing hyperlocal marketing strategies for startups is an exciting task for a marketer. Recently, an innovative campaign for a food delivery startup in Bengaluru was something different from the traditional BTL activities. The whole startup team came on-ground, stood at the gates of Ecospace Tech Park in the peak evening hours with banners in their hands. No selling and no pitching but high-impact visibility. This is just a glimpse of what hyperlocal marketing does.

Consumers are very sensitive to a direct interaction by the brands and hyperlocal lets you touch exactly this aspect of marketing. An interaction with enthusiastic young startup team, aware of their business and solutions, is a great recipe for swift customer acquisition. The best results of a hyperlocal marketing strategy depend greatly on active on-ground participation of the startup teams. It not only makes them increase their marketshare but also sometimes makes them hit the headlines for free!

Positive results have been definitely seen in brand recall through hyperlocal marketing strategies. Entrepreneurs can make the best use of localised advertising spaces in sync with the branding campaigns for a brand recall by their target audience. It uses the marketing budgets that are to be spent on brand recall efforts most efficiently. Result: a guaranteed increase in brand establishment, conversions and finally the marketshare.

The disruption

Gone are the days when brand building was a game for big bucks. Today, with hyperlocal marketing solutions, even startups low on marketing budgets can think of establishing their brand among the target audience and compete with big payers in a localised environment.

More entrepreneurs and startups in the future will look for a simple and complete localised marketing solution to reach out to their target consumer. Thankfully, with innovations in organising advertising spaces, entrepreneurs will find good solutions in hyperlocal marketing on a single platform.

About the Author:

Prateek Tandon is the founder of www.ShopAdSpace.com, a marketplace for advertising spaces across verticals like radio spots, cinema advertising, mall promotions, newspaper ad campaigns or non-traditional advertising such as streetplays, ads on Saavn, gym branding.

(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory)

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