2014-03-June-Brands.jpgAs a career-long marketing vendor, I've always been taught that large national brands and small-to-medium companies behave differently. They cannot be sold, marketed or serviced with the same principles. They have different targets, ideals, KPIs and most importantly -- budgets.

While this remains largely true, today’s always-connected consumer means that any size brand, anywhere, needs to be more mindful of a very important consumer detail: their location.

Mobile has, to different degrees, taken over our lives. For those of us who rely on it to cater to our prospects’ needs and wants -- on the go, all the time -- our dependence on it feels exponentially greater. Despite this known widespread consumer adoption, mobile advertising by large brands has been slower to catch on than anticipated. Advertisers have typically associated this type of marketing with small, local businesses, which don’t always set a precedent for top-notch marketing or customer acquisition efforts, and therefore don’t inspire bigger brands to follow suit, no matter how impressive their success stories.

But mobile devices are the consoles to our entire life today. As an advertiser, becoming -- and staying -- relevant means that every sized company must continuously push the bar higher for better local and mobile advertising. Whether a brand uses mobile apps, to advertising, to social and search, localizing this form of marketing is not just important, it’s necessary.

Let’s take a look at three ways national brands can use mobile strategies to capitalize on local markets.

Geofenced Advertising

One of the best things about mobile is that it allows companies to execute national branding campaigns with some local zing. Since the smartphone boom, over 150 million people in the US are now walking GPSs -- allowing advertisers to reach and deliver content that is completely tailored and customized to a specific audience in a specific region, where it really counts. Technology now allows advertisers to use the power of the GPS to ensure their ads are targeted, specific and relevant to consumers.

Take restaurants, for example. Many national chains support the marketing and advertising for their entire ecosystem, but geo-fenced mobile advertising can now execute national-to-local promotions and target them accordingly to certain states or even zip codes. This means that one acquisition budget supports a multitude, without wasting budget on ad impressions to people who aren’t within the vicinity to utilize the offer. While the brands themselves get loads of data on impressions, take rates, redemptions, clicks, etc., by market. Out with the aggregate and in with the specific.

Click to Call

Click to call isn’t just a convenience factor for the user. It’s viewed as a bridge for mobile to real world transactions or interactions -- but one that mainly only small local businesses have attribute success metrics to. A new BIA/Kelsey report cites that 66 percent of small- to medium-sized businesses rate phone calls as a good source for leads. So can this translate for national brands?