Smaller ad agencies should use hyper-local advertising

For years, mega-sized advertising agencies beat out their smaller counterparts 9 times out of 10 because they could access large-scale media buys for a better price. But Matt Murphy, Founder and Executive Director of fusion92, believes that this trend may be slowing, as hyper-local advertising allows “mid-sized and smaller firms with broad regional knowledge and full-service advertising capabilities that include digital expertise” to gain a clear advantage.

Hyper-local advertising targets individuals at the neighborhood or ZIP code level and delivers timely, relevant ads that often have a local component in the creative or messaging. Consumers are inundated daily with ads on every media channel, with most being ignored because they don’t have any relevance to the user. But hyper-local advertisers can create smarter, more targeted approaches that vary by location.

Agencies already use to reach targeted markets by DMA. They have access to media planning data for local websites, print magazines, newspapers, radio, TV and out of home.

But just because these agencies are tailoring their campaigns for local markets doesn’t mean they are ditching large national campaigns. On the contrary, it’s more about using data and technology to customize a large campaign so that it is better matches the targeted audience.

It makes sense that a message incorporating something about your neighborhood (a free appetizer at the Chili’s down your street, for example) has a greater chance of resonating. And not just for you, for everyone in your ZIP code. For users in Chicago, Chicago Bulls imagery or a sound clip from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra might make strike a personal (and memorable) note.

Another reason agencies should consider hyper-local advertising is that it’s cost-effective. Digital technology such as Foursquare encourages users to share location information, making it easy for advertisers to reach their target markets, both through traditional methods and digital channelsAccording to Murphy:

“Advertisers can segment target audiences to ZIP-code levels, build customizable creative for local components of national campaigns and use digital and traditional advertising channels to distribute hyper-local ads and generate market share gains across multiple regions.”

The ad industry is only going to get more competitive, but if smaller agencies can take the bull by the horns and become more agile, then they have a big opportunity. Plus, the technology and data is already there, so why not use it? 

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