One of the biggest crutches with digital marketing is of course, that it’s digital. It’s all based online and where that’s perfect for on ecommerce business or a business that relies on online transactions we can reach a stumbling block pretty early on if your business relies on good old fashioned footfall to a brick and mortar business.
One of the key components for any digital marketing strategy is understanding the buyer's journey. Depending on what you’re selling, the buyer's journey may look different. For instance, you will spend a lot of time researching and deciding what car to buy and where to buy it from than you would when buying your Sunday newspaper. As marketers, we look at the steps your customers take when it comes to purchasing and how best to target them at each stage. For brick and mortar businesses, this shouldn’t start and end with your shop front, you have a range of digital options in your arsenal to take advantage of.
An online presence can be a key factor in raising awareness of your business and attracting people to come to you. With pretty much all customers now having the internet in their pocket and actively using it to make decisions, it’s something all businesses can utilize to expand their brand relationship with their customers or just get their name out there.
Facebook has built its advertising offering based on the sheer volume of data it has on its users. They know who their users are, where they are and their interests. It’s a valuable resource for advertisers who want to raise awareness of their business on either Facebook or Instagram.
Facebook has a number of ad formats that are designed to drive online viewers to physical traffic. For businesses with more than one location you can use a Store Visits Ad, which include a map in the ad itself, so viewers can see the physical location of your store; it will also link to your company information, so people can easily contact you and see opening hours.
Where a business may only have one location, you can still target using a postcode, to show to people in the area. Building ad copy around being a local business, using photos that people will recognise and promoting their USP’s.
Google Search Ads
With Google Ads, businesses have the option to set up Location Extensions to show Local Search Ads, showing ads on Google Maps. For this, users can link the ads with their Google My Business Account and target and bid on a specific location. You would set keywords based on what people are searching for locally. This would mean you can build ads to show when people are actively looking in the local area, showing at the top of the search results on Google Maps searches, as well as the map itself.
If you have a number of stores or sites and adhere to Google’s criteria, you can also use Google’s Store Visit Conversions. Like Facebook, this allows Google to see the clicks that turn into traffic. For privacy reasons though, advertisers cannot see individual clicks or people, it needs to be able to aggregate a large sum of data in order to utilise this, thus making it unusable for a lot of smaller businesses.
We can also include a Call extension in the Search Ads themselves, making it easier for people to contact your business directly when searching for relevant terms. This is easy to track and completely measurable.
We can see exactly when are where people are searching for your terms and bid accordingly. If you’re a restaurant in Bristol and we can see that more people are searching on their mobile for somewhere to eat in Bristol at 8:00pm on a Thursday, then we can bid to show more competitively at that time. Using bid modifiers, such as device, location and time, we can create an ad strategy that works for you in real time, to make sure your budget is being spent in the areas that drive you the best traffic (both digital and physical).
Waze, the popular GPS app, allows advertising on their platform, so you can target those near your business. They offer three ad formats, Branded Pins (showing your business pin on the map itself), Promoted Search (showing a text ad at the top of the search results) and, for an increased price, Zero-Speed Takeover ads (which show a display ad when drivers have come to a stop).
Discounts and Offers
A marketing classic that has stood the test of time, the humble offer. We have seen businesses who have advertised offers in their ads before, that users need to just screenshot or quote to get a discount at the till. If it’s that first time try and you want to give potential customers that little something to entice them in, PPC can be a way to get that message out there.
Remember, PPC is tailorable to your business. You can show in the areas that you serve, show to the people who are likely to convert. With all of our clients, the most important question we ask is always, “Is PPC working for you?”. Though we have online data and we can see how people are interacting with your website, the most important thing is always ROI. Are our clients getting a return on investment and what does that return mean to them?