As most who work within marketing know, location is an incredibly important detail to crafting the best marketing strategies for your business. Geotargeting is a marketing method that acknowledges the importance of location and helps to serve content to particular areas. Not only does geotargeting offer a more selective advertising experience, this particular strategy also provides a more sophisticated sense of personalization for your audience. To better understand geotargeting, we have laid out what we, at Auburn Advertising, believe to be the most essential parts of understanding geotargeting.

What is the difference between geotargeting and geofencing?

While geotargeting and geofencing do similar things, there are some distinct differences to consider. Geofencing allows you to draw a virtual barrier around a designated area using users’ IP addresses. All ads within the fence can be viewed by clients from their tablets, computers, or phones as long as they are within the parameters. Geotargeting provides a narrower experience and seeks to meet more specific, targeting criteria inside a defined radius. The main difference is that geotargeting focuses on demographics, location, and other factors, whereas geofencing will show ads to anyone within a certain area.

Who is your audience?

The most important part of geotargeting is knowing your audience. Since geotargeting works by putting your advertisements and content before your target audience, it is important to know exactly who your audience is. Knowledge is power and knowing who you are targeting will allow you to prioritize their needs, wants, and preferences. As a business, it is important to conduct proper research first to establish who your target audience is before beginning to look into the ways in which you can cater to them.

How is geotargeting used?

According to GeoMarketing, “the central idea behind geotargeting is that understanding a consumers real-time—or past—location helps you to achieve the holy grail of delivering the most impactful message.” They use the example of an adult who is in the market for a new car. Since that person is looking for a car, they will likely visit different car dealerships. In understanding where this person has been, we can better understand what that person wants or needs. So, serving an ad for a local Honda dealership would likely be successful. This is specifically an example of geotargeting on the hyperlocal level, but it can be applied on a larger scale as well.

Geotargeting is performed primarily through software provided by different social media platforms. These are some of the most widely known and used software, according to HubSpot:

  • Facebook Location Targeting
  • Google Ads Location Targeting
  • Twitter Geotargeting
  • Instagram Locations & Geotags
  • LinkedIn Geotargeting
  • Snapchat Location Targeting

Which software you use depends on what your goals are. Facebook is useful for targeting a large audience, but that means it is more difficult to target a specific demographic. Similarly, if your target audience is a younger demographic, Snapchat would be a great social platform to utilize for geotargeting since most of the users are younger. Marketing to a younger generation, like Gen Z, requires different marketing tactics that would not be as effective with an older demographic.

How are larger brands using geotargeting?

To get a better idea of how geotargeting is implemented, here are a few ways in which other companies are using geotargeting:

  • After partnering with xAd, Denny’s targeted customers that had previously been to and enjoyed their local Denny’s. Their campaign “Build Your Own Skillet” produced an 11.6 percent increase for in-store visits. A second wave of the mobile campaign, “Build Your Own French Toast,” delivered a 34% increase.
  • On top of creating humorous, entertaining commercials, Purple Mattress implemented a very successful campaign targeting warm climates. As temperatures rise, so does sleep discomfort. In response to this known phenomenon, Purple began targeting social media users in warm climates (such as Phoenix) with their “Sleep Cool” campaign. This campaign was one of Purple’s most successful marketing endeavors in the history of the company.

At Auburn Advertising, we thoroughly understand the benefits of both geotargeting and geofencing, and we can implement both strategies as necessary to help meet your business’s specific marketing needs.

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