From search engines to social media platforms, geotargeted ads can take your digital marketing strategy to a new level of impact. Location-based advertising expands your reach to the warmest leads, no matter what type of audience you’re looking for.
Find out how geotargeted ads work, plus actionable tips for manufacturers with any type of sales funnel.
What Is Geotargeting?
Geotargeting uses an individual’s location to present relevant, personalized ads. There are two strategies for location-based advertising: geotargeting and geofencing.
- Geotargeting focuses on a defined audience in a particular area. Ads are delivered after mobile phone users opt-in to share their location through their mobile apps.
- Geofencing is a virtual perimeter around a specific area, created using GPS and IP address technology.
Geotargeted ads can be run on Google, Facebook and other social media platforms. They’re extremely customizable, allowing you to create content specific to each area. For instance, a user who clicks on an ad in California could be sent to a different landing page than someone in New Jersey. You can adjust the imagery and copy to give a completely unique experience based on location.
Manufacturers focusing on products for residential construction, for instance, could include pictures of prominent architectural styles in each state, rather than one blanket ad that doesn’t connect well with certain segments.
In addition to helping you find the right audience, geotargeting can also help exclude the wrong audience from seeing your ads. For instance, if your company is based in the U.S. and doesn’t offer to ship to Canada yet, then you'd set parameters to only advertise to people located in the U.S.
Benefits of Geotargeting Ads
Geotargeting can help manufacturers reach online audiences who are highly relevant, local and engaged. There are several other benefits that can help improve your presence online when you use effective geotargeting.
Deliver Personalized Content
Whether you’re selling to architects, builders or DIYers, your content should be tailored to your specific audience. Geotargeting lets you do just that. Consumers respond better to relevant content. In fact, 61% say this distinction makes them feel better about a company.
Capture Warm Leads
Use geotargeted marketing to capture leads that are actually looking for your product. Depending on your product and availability, you could push ads when an individual enters a home improvement store or send a coupon code when they walk near a distributor’s showroom. This can be much more effective than solely focusing on organic traffic, both online and offline.
Lower customer acquisition costs
Because you’re focusing on warmer leads with geotargeting, you’re more likely to increase conversions while lowering your cost-per-click. That’s because you’re not spending marketing dollars on individuals who don’t meet your location criteria.
Hide Ads From Your Competitors
Another perk of using geotargeted ads is that it can actually prevent your competitors from seeing this component of your marketing strategy. For instance, you can exclude the IP address of their corporate headquarters to make it harder for them to see your ads.
Getting Started With Geotargeting
Each online platform has its own interface for uploading and running ads. These are mostly straightforward and user-friendly, but there are guides to walk you through each platform if it’s your first time.
And marketers can avoid making costly mistakes with a few guidelines in mind.
- Understand who your audience is and why they’re buying your product. What problem does your product solve for them? How can you speak about those solutions and help them understand your product better?
- Set the right goals for your advertising campaigns. Are you trying to get website traffic? Build your email list? You should know this information before placing any ads, and some platforms will force you to set a goal before delivering an ad. Facebook’s ad manager requires you to pick an objective for your ad, whether that’s to convert a lead, raise your brand’s awareness or reach a wider audience.
- Show and tell with the right copy and visual elements in your ad. Your audience sees a lot of content every day, so you’ll want to create appealing, eye-catching copy and design that keeps their attention while they’re on the page.
- Test, test, test. “The beauty of online ads is that you can test and refine your messages in real-time. As you grow more confident with online ads, you may run several variations of an ad at once, changing a single variable and looking to see which ad performs better over time. This lets you constantly improve ad performance,” says Zach Williams, Venveo's Founder.
- Don’t forget your metrics. No matter which platform you’ve decided to run ads on, it will provide you with seriously significant data about your marketing efforts and what you’re spending on the ads.
Don’t be afraid to just get your ad out there. Even if you’re starting out with a smaller budget, the information you’ll get about your audience and ad performance will help you improve your marketing efforts over time.
“Because even when starting small, you will begin gathering valuable data. Do you really understand your target audience? Is the messaging you’ve been using for years actually working? This is critical customer research that will enable you to make data-driven decisions in the future,” says Williams.
How To Geotarget on Each Major Platform
Different platforms have their own formats for ads and geotargeting. Here’s a brief overview of five of the top platforms and how manufacturers can utilize location-specific ads.
Google: Search and GDN Ads
Google Ads is a paid advertising service that allocates ads within search results. The results are dependent on location. For example, if you search “Siding Services,” the first results that appear on your search page will be those in nearby areas.
Local search ads are also available through Google Ads. This is a great way to drive foot traffic to an event, store or specific location. For users that include “near me” in their search, these ads can ensure your company appears in the results.
Through Google Ads, you can also use Google Display Network (GDN) ads. These ads will appear as users visit other websites across the GDN. These can be targeted to people in a specific location.
Facebook: Promoted Ads and Posts
Facebook offers two types of campaigns: ads and posts. Ads are more customizable — for instance, you can create a carousel ad of products. A promoted post boosts a specific post to appear in more feeds and focuses on increasing engagement rather than click-throughs. You can use geotargeting for either strategy.
Facebook allows you to select people who live in an area, have recently visited there or are currently traveling there. Available locations to choose from can be extremely specific, such as a zip code area or a business address. So if someone has visited a competitor’s showroom, you could create a laser-focused ad campaign to appear in their feed.
Twitter: Ad Campaigns
Twitter ads are structured similarly to Facebook ads. You can use a number of geographic targets, as well as interests and keywords, to narrow down your audience. There are three types of Twitter ads to choose from:
- Promoted ads: These look like tweets and can include text, images and/or video.
- Follower ads: With this option, you can choose your location and demographic audience and have your brand suggested to them as an account to follow.
- Trend takeover: Your ad will appear on Twitter’s Explore tab as either a static image, quick video or GIF.
Instagram: Feed and Stories Ads
Choose from four feed ad types or two stories ad types on Instagram. When incorporating geotargeted ads in your audience’s IG feed, you can select carousel images, a single image, a video or a slideshow. In stories, you can opt for a single image or a video. Add a location sticker to your story to boost your visibility even more.
When creating either type of ad campaign on Instagram, the geotargeting features are very similar to Facebook, allowing you to create an audience based on location as well as other interests and behaviors.
LinkedIn: Promoted Ads
If your building materials company has a B2B business model, you can gain traction by using geotargeted ads on LinkedIn. In addition to location, you can also target specific companies or job titles. For instance, you could promote ads to architects in a specific region. Or if a commercial real estate firm recently announced a major construction project, you could blast ads to the entire company to boost the visibility of your product.
Running Geotargeting Ads: What to Remember
As you begin to decide where to launch a geotargeted marketing strategy, follow these tips before executing a campaign.
Segment Your Campaigns
If you’re a manufacturer or supplier with several locations, it might be better to distribute your ads based on product, not location. Say you have a few stores in the same five-mile radius — you don’t want to run ads for the same location because you’re competing against yourself on the same keywords.
Geotargeting will allow you to set up your ads so that they’re served to an audience within a specific area, but advertisers can also segment campaigns by product if that’s more budget-friendly.
Test Your Messaging
Geotargeting might come in handy for some marketers because it can help improve your marketing strategy over time as a manufacturer. For instance, a flooring manufacturer can create ads for different products, like hardwood, engineered and vinyl flooring. You can test and refine the messaging for each one to get the best results.
Fund Dealer Ads
Even if you don’t have a showroom or storefront of your own, you can still take advantage of geotargeted ads by funding ads for your dealers. Anderson Windows is a great example of a brand using this strategy. They pay for dealers’ marketing spend to bring in nearby customers who can then check out Anderson Windows in person. If you search for “Anderson Windows'' right now, you’re likely to see a local dealer ad pop up alongside the main brand’s website.
Partnering with distributors works best if you can create clear messaging that provides consistency between your dealer’s ads and how they’re pitching your product on the sales floor.
Know Your Audience
Ad messaging should also be segmented by audience types, such as pros or DIYers. And if your product applies to both types of users, then create separate campaigns for each one. Maybe you target local builders with LinkedIn ads while launching a carousel ad for homeowners on Instagram.
Pay Attention to Location Details
There are a few different options for geotargeting your audience, whether they live in the region you’re focusing on or have just recently visited. Geotargeting can be based on someone’s historical location or real-time location, so make sure you’re including the people you really want when selecting your audience demographics.
Google My Business: Importance of the Google 3-Pack
Getting listed on Google My Business is a must-have for local manufacturers. Not only does it legitimize your business, but it also improves your chances of being shown as part of the Google 3-Pack.
Google 3-Pack is the view of the top three local companies that come up at the top of Google search listing or show below the paid advertisements. 3-Pack clicks go to the company’s name, leading them directly to a phone number, making it extremely user-friendly and efficient. It tells searchers that your business is the most relevant compared to other local services.
To start appearing in this prized location, you need a large number of reviews and major click-throughs. The more you target your ads and content, the better experience you give your users. This, in turn, encourages them to click on your ads and leave reviews once they have a positive experience with your brand.
Get Better Results With Geotargeting
Geotargeting is an easy way to start or grow your company’s digital marketing strategy. It helps you get smart with your online ad spending, while also creating more effective campaigns that increase ROI.
Need help getting started with location-based advertising? Start a project with us today.