Target Customers on the Go With Hyperlocal Geofencing Ads

By Tinuiti Team

It sounds shocking, but today’s average consumer checks their phone about 80 times a day—almost twice that if they’re a Millennial.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could leverage those constant check-ins to make your advertising more effective?

Well, that’s the general idea of geofencing—to put your ads in front of the right people, in the right place, at the right time.

By building a virtual “fence” around a location, geofencing lets you target a very specific group of potential consumers. It could be fans at a football stadium, concertgoers at an arena, museum patrons or even just riders on the subway.

The main goal? To connect you with viable customers in real-time, in the real world.


Geofencing vs. Hyperlocal Geofencing

Geofencing in itself is a pretty powerful advertising tool, but it becomes even more powerful when you go hyperlocal.

While basic geofencing can create that virtual boundary by targeting an entire zip code, a set of IP addresses from your customer database or all phones within a certain triangle of cell towers, hyper local geofencing dives deeper than that.

By using established GPS coordinates—along with the location-based tracking enabled in many apps and mobile devices—hyper local geofencing is able to precisely target customers on the go. A hyper local geofence can be as small as 150 feet. (That could be just one aisle of a store!)

Ultimately, this type of hyper local advertising can allow for much more targeted messaging and strategy, in the end, a higher ROI and more sales as a result.

Putting Geofencing to Use

So how can advertisers actually use hyper local geofencing?

Once you’ve established a GPS-based boundary, you can create campaigns that directly target mobile users within that area. You then set up “triggers,” which send those users text messages, email alerts, app notifications and more right to their mobile device when they enter the “fenced” area.

Here’s an example: Let’s say you run a coffee shop. When someone enters your block and is presumably walking down the street in your area, you can send a push notification that alerts them of a special deal—maybe a free donut with the purchase of a coffee or 10 percent off their bill.

Whatever it is, you’re: 1) Raising their awareness of your brand, & 2) Giving them immediate incentive to buy from your business.

You can even make the deal good for a future purchase, so they can come back at a later date if they’re strapped for time.

Hyper local marketing advertising like this can also be used in other ways—including in retargeting and contextual campaigns.

Use a geofence to reach back out to potential consumers later on when they enter a specific area or store, or even base your messaging on the type of location they’re at, the demos of the area they’re located in or specific Census data like political affiliations and median income in the region.

Geotargeting Ad Campaign Examples:

Below are a couple examples of geo-targeted campaigns that successfully connected consumers with local retail brands.

Working with Appboy and PlaceIQ, Urban Outfitters used dynamic audience filters to deliver messages based on shoppers’ real-world locations.

According to the feature by Marketing Dive, Urban Outfitters sent push notifications promoting party dresses to females who had recently visited bars and nightclubs. The targeted campaign resulted in a 75% increase in conversions and a 146% lift in revenue.

Credit: Appboy


Purple Mattress is another good example of an ecommerce brand who leveraged local weather conditions and applied it to their ad copy to target customers. Last year, the mattress company introduced their “Sleep cool with Purple” campaign meant to target customers in hot weather locations with information about their unique airflow mattress technology.

According to Bryant Garvin, Purple’s digital advertising director, by refining the ad copy to include the city name and a reference to the current weather—Purple Mattress has been able to generate higher click-through rates.

According to Roman Fitch, Retail Search Manager at CPC Strategy we use this strategy to help retail brands focus ad budget on their top selling ZIPs.

roman gmail ads“We target specific ZIP codes where the brand’s CRM system has proven to be high value,” he said.

For example we might focus on specific zip codes within the New York area if we know 30 to 40% of their sales come from this region.

“The main benefits for this type of segmentation is more control over budgets, more control over creative, and we can view auction insights reports by location,” he said.

Using Geofencing to Oust the Competition

Hyperlocal advertising is also a great way to beat your competition out of potential business.

The idea’s pretty simple: Use your competitor’s GPS coordinates to offer shoppers deals on products they’re on the hunt for in real-time. Give them deals, discounts or special offers that entice them to leave that competitor and visit your location instead.

You can also target consumers in the vicinity of your competitors, like those at nearby convention centers or tourist spots.

At the very least, if your hyper local geomarketing doesn’t work, it gives you information to boost your next campaign. You’ll know where consumers were and what message they saw, and you can refine and polish until your results improve. You can also use that data in retargeting efforts.

More Geofencing and Geomarketing Tips

Though the idea behind hyper local targeting is pretty simple, the execution of such a campaign is not. If you’re thinking of getting into this type of advertising, you’re best off with enlisting a pro agency that can help get your feet off the ground.

Here are a few other tips from hyper local mobile advertising experts:

In today’s mobile-obsessed world, there’s no doubt that hyperlocal advertising holds enormous weight. Giving you the ability to target specific, localized consumer groups in real-time throughout the sales funnel presents significant opportunity for advertisers and marketers alike.

To learn more about geofencing, email [email protected]

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