A new study from the CMA Council, "Localize to Optimize Sales Channel Effectiveness," reports that localization of messages, images, creative executions, offers, deals, and interactions is still critical to marketing effectiveness and customer relationship building across many business categories.
While the Internet has eclipsed the Yellow Pages book as the primary go-to resource for finding things locally, says the report, consumers still desire a very local buying and service experience from a trusted community participant and presence.
Local marketing multi-channel and digital marketing platforms and solutions are enabling national or regional marketers to produce, package, distribute, and digitally repurpose multiple versions of content, collateral, advertising, direct mail, promotional, and in-store merchandising materials very cost-efficiently and effectively.
Marketers are able to localize and customize campaigns by community and to accommodate factors such as climate, geography, ethnic composition, demographics, shopper-graphics, psychographics, politics, and even neuro-sensory influences.
The study finds that 86% of national marketers surveyed intend to look for ways to better modify, adapt, and localize their marketing content, messaging, and prospect engagement practices, but only 52% of marketers are satisfied with the leadership, innovation, and effectiveness in this area.
Just 12% of marketers believe they have highly evolved campaigns and analytics on a local level in contrast to nearly 50% who see themselves as underperforming or needing new strategic thinking and capability development in local marketing.
Findings from the online survey across all leading industry sectors indicate traditional print and broadcast/cable media are losing ground to more targeted, personalized, interactive, and measurable forms of local engagement across diverse audiences and communities.
The most preferred channels for localized marketing are experiential and relationship-building events, direct mail, localized websites, social networks, and electronic messaging. These were far more popular selections than cable and broadcast television, radio, local magazines, and even daily and weekly newspapers. The Yellow Pages (online and offline) and local online deal delivery networks lagged behind all channels of localized marketing choice for national brands.
Significantly, says the report, are these key factors from the study:
The report concludes by noting that this CMO Council study reveals huge upside potential for brands implementing localized marketing strategies that enable their sales and customer-facing networks to be more adept in connecting and communicating with consumers and prospects on a more personal and relevant level.