Let's Get Hyperlocal

5 Ways Hyperlocal Marketing Will Help Small Businesses Rank Higher on Facebook

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Have your social media efforts got you feeling like you’re on an emotional roller-coaster lately? Guess what, you’re not alone! Between algorithm changes suppressing branded content, to the increasingly rising cost of social media advertising, it can feel impossible to get your message out there. Alas, there is a silver lining! Facebook has announced that changes to the New Feed will now favor content from local publishers (in addition to serving up updates from friends and family), in order to reduce noise and offer accurate, relevant information to its users.

So, what does this mean for small businesses and local publications? Well, it’s great news, actually! According to Facebook, the platform will now “show more stories from news sources in your local town or city. If you follow a local publisher or if someone shares a local story, it may show up higher in News Feed”. Awesome! Now what?

First things first, let’s consider the idea of hyperlocal marketing. While hyperlocal marketing may sound like another buzz term, it’s actually a very savvy way of reaching your immediate audience in a genuine, engaging way (check out our blog on the basics of hyperlocal marketing here). Knowing that Facebook is now putting more [algorithm] stock into localized content and local publishers, we are seeing great opportunities to leverage hyperlocal strategy to boost awareness.

Here are a few ways to get into the hyperlocal game: 

Geo-Tagging: Always geo-tag your content. This is the most basic tactic in your hyperlocal arsenal. Publishing a status update, check in. Posting an article, check in. Sharing a photo, check in. Any time you check in and tag your location, Facebook will know to serve up your content to your local audience.

Geo-Targeting & Geo-Fencing: Running ads? Be sure to target your immediate area. With Geo-targeting you can promote your message to people in specific locations, with distinct characteristics and backgrounds. Have a specific product or special you’re looking to promote, consider Geo-Fencing. This allows you to draw a virtual fence around a particular area. For example, if you’re a local bar near a stadium, you might want to geo-fence your ad to be served up to folks who are attending the game.

Notifications & See First Feature: Ask your community to check the “See First” option on your page. This will allow your followers to see your content when it’s published, allowing them to stay up to date.

Talk the Talk: Stay up to date on things happening in and around your immediate area. Your value as a local source lies in your ability to capture the essence of your city or neighborhood. Use your surroundings as inspiration to talk about your brand or your products. By investing in your local community, you are showing Facebook that you are a valued source (which in turn helps you rank better against the algorithm). Speaking of community…

Build & Nurture Your Community: Your community is at the heart of your success. These are the people who follow you, engage with you and share your content. The more you acknowledge your followers and fans, the more likely they are to recommend you to their peers. When your followers engage and share your content, your reach and visibility is given a much needed boost. Learn more about community building here.

 

Want to learn more about ways to boost your Facebook presence? Reach out! hello@vantagepointsf.com 

Why Community Still Matters

How Strategic Community Management Will Help You Stay Ahead of Algorithm Changes

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Oh, changes. Anyone that relies on social media for marketing knows that in order to maintain relevance, flexibility is necessary to survive. News of algorithm changes are the new norm, and swift action and creative thinking become your greatest assets in helping your brand maintain a grasp on visibility and reach. So, what to do when the next big algorithm change uproots your efforts? The answer is right in front of you: consider your community.

Think about it, your community is the pillar of your entire social media presence. These are your fans and advocates. These are the people who find value in what you offer; they’re an untapped source for everything from feedback, to promotion, to endorsement. It’s no surprise that when Facebook rolled out their latest litany of changes, brands with a solid community management strategy were least affected.

Let’s be honest though, community management has earned a pretty lousy reputation among most marketers. It’s typically seen as an extension of customer service, which isn’t exactly the most glamorous role one can play on the marketing stage. However, what most brands fail to see is that community management is rife with creative opportunities to eschew meaningful interactions with your fans and followers, while maintaining and even boosting your KPI’s.

So, let’s break it down:

Understanding the Algorithm

The Game is Organic Reach. In regards to Facebook, we know that the current changes involve serving up content from family and friends over promoted and branded content. However, the golden rule that Content is King still very much applies here. Create great content that resonates with your community, and they’ll engage and share it. Your audience acts as a peer affinity group: the more your content is shared organically, the more likely it is to be served up to a bigger audience. 

Don’t Underestimate the Power of Conversation. Guess what, replying to, and conversing with your fans actually helps you stay above the fold. Meaning, if you maintain regular communication (liking and replying to comments, commenting on influential followers posts, liking and engaging with posts from people outside of your immediate community), you are that much more likely to be favored.

Use New Features. Facebook and Instagram “reward” their users for leveraging new features such as live video, stories, groups and hashtag following. Every time you give a new feature a go, you’ll be placed in a higher exposure bracket.

Community Over Algorithm

A Simple Thank You Goes a Long Way. Algorithm or not, never take your community for granted. These folks follow you, engage with you and provide significant value to you. You need them more than they need you. Therefore, any time your followers interact with you, be sure to acknowledge them. Even a simple like or “thank you” will let them know that you appreciate them. And in turn, they’ll be that much more likely to keep engaging with you.

Make Them Feel Like a VIP. Offer exclusive content if they follow your group, host follower-only giveaways, give them priority previews, flash sales, anything that makes them feel like they’re part of something special and exclusive.

Help Them Help You. Get to know the people who follow you. It’s very likely that you’ll find folks who are outspoken and excited by what you do, so, why not enlist them as your very own influencer? Is there someone who fits the profile of your perfect customer or follower? Give them the spotlight! Let these folks preach about you, and their network will follow.

 

Questions about how you can ignite your community? Reach out! Hello@VantagePointSF.com

What the %&#$ is Hyper-Local Marketing?

“Okay, what the %&#$ is hyper-local marketing”, you might be asking yourself. At face value, the term “hyper-local marketing” brings about images of kids with lemonade stands or maybe your neighbor plastering the neighborhood with garage sale posters, but in reality, it’s a lot more interesting than that. Let me explain.

The idea and practice of hyper-local marketing is actually a relatively new thing. As the practice of digital marketing continues to expand and evolve, we are finding new ways to reach and engage with our audiences, in more meaningful ways. Hyper-local marketing was born out of the need for businesses to better reach their customers without having to invest large sums of money in advertising efforts.

By definition, hyper-local marketing is the means by which you reach your target audience within a very specific location, using local vernacular/language and any other personalization unique to that audience segment in order to fulfill a specific marketing goal within that region.

Sandwich board sign in Colorado - beer or bears? Which would you choose?

Sandwich board sign in Colorado - beer or bears? Which would you choose?

What does this mean for you? As a small business, this means you can reach people around your immediate area, using simple tactics without having to invest large sums of money into advertising. Depending on your goals, you can leverage hyper-local marketing to increase foot-traffic, offer unique experiences, build customer advocacy, maintain or grow your client lists, or all of the above! The options are endless.

As with any marketing strategy, hyper-local marketing efforts must begin with a clear idea of your business goal (foot traffic, sales, event registration, etc.), then your desired geographic region – it can be as wide as an entire city (think large brands running localized campaigns, such as Verizon or AT&T) or as small as your neighborhood or zip code.

Polygamy Porter advertising in Utah - talk about knowing your market!

Polygamy Porter advertising in Utah - talk about knowing your market!

Once you know your goals and targets, you can start leveraging your social media platforms to promote your message. Avenues such as Facebook Groups, Instagram, Instagram Ads, and of course Yelp and Nextdoor are made for tapping into the local scene, while helping drive your message to the right people at the right time.

 

Want to know more about hyper-local marketing and how you can use it to grow your business? Reach out to learn more: hello@vantagepointsf.com

The Vantage Point Manifesto

 

At Vantage Point, we believe that the keys to success lie in collaboration, transparency and out-of-the-box thinking. Our values are what keep us laser focused on creating positive change for our clients and community. This is our manifesto:

We believe in:

 

small businesses and brands

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authentic story-telling and captivating narratives

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creating genuine, long-lasting connections with customers

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thinking outside the box

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taking a tailored approach

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data-driven strategy

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creating meaningful and engaging experiences

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