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Opinion: The Hyperlocal Opportunity

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A growing number of businesses are sharpening their focus on hyperlocal advertising and marketing. Still in its nascent stage, hyperlocal presents an attractive opportunity: the power to engage with customers at the optimum time and place.

The catalysts behind the hyperlocal trend fall into two camps. First is the continued maturation of technologies, namely those capable of delivering marketers the information they need to determine a consumer’s precise location.

Today there are multiple categories of information that businesses can tap into including: derived information (mobile phone number, area code, etc.); declared information (registration process, hotel check-ins, VIP clubs); network initiated information (triangulation, carrier, Wi-Fi, hot spot); and GPS (iPhone, BlackBerry, Symbian, Windows Mobile).

Second is the fact that consumers have voiced an interest in locally driven communications. In fact, according to the Mobile Marketing Association, half of mobile users who noticed any ads while using location-based services took action. The MMA also found that most mobile users are “interested in allowing their phone to automatically share their location in exchange for perks, such as free use of mobile applications and mobile coupons.” These are meaningful numbers that clearly demonstrate why a growing number of brands are looking to latch on to this trend. 

With these figures in mind, the temptation to jump into the hyperlocal waters is high. However, before taking action, marketers are advised to first run through a quick hyperlocal marketing checklist.

Make sure hyperlocal is a fit for your business
Determine if your business has a large enough customer base to warrant such an investment. Hyperlocal is best suited for businesses trying to move products that have value but also a limited shelf life. A good example would be a flower chain looking to unload the remainder of their summer flowers for a nice discount or a Starbucks franchise looking to sell off its remaining stock of Pumpkin Space Lattes before the Eggnog Latte season kicks off.  Businesses also must have real-time, 24/7 visibility into inventory and the ability to see what is available at any given moment.

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