Location Tools Tips and Tricks

By Christy Barnes     |     January 31, 2013
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We hosted a Twitter chat about location tools for small businesses and got a ton of great responses. Here’s a run-down of what we talked about in case you missed it!

Question 1: What should you know about Facebook Graph Search and how will it affect your business?

Facebook Graph Search is a new feature, still in beta, that allows users to search Facebook’s huge store of information to find photos, places, people with similar interests, etc. It is being rolled out slowly, but will be essential for brands to prepare for.

Key action items include:

  • Clean up your Facebook brand page and optimize it for search. Make sure information is complete (using keywords!) and physical locations have accurate addresses and phone numbers.
  • Optimize your profile photo – update photo to 620×620 pixel resolution for the new search displays.
  • Increase likes, interactions, check-ins and reviews to get higher in search results.
  • Read more on Facebook Graph search.

 

Question 2: How have you used Foursquare to reach new people and get them in the door?

Get started on Foursquare if you haven’t already – a Foursquare brand page is another great location tool for small businesses to drive foot traffic. You can post tips and photos, include links to other social sites, offer check-in badges and more. Foursquare best practices include:

  • Run specials through Foursquare to get people to come to your business.
  • Tweet with people that check-in to start new conversations and build your online community involvement
  • Use Foursquare’s merchant dashboard to help identify new visitors and frequent vistors.

 

Question 3: How should you take advantage of Facebook Nearby?

Facebook Nearby, powered by Facebook Graph Search, harnesses the power of word of mouth and recommendations. Find local places that your friends have recommended, checked-in to or liked. The more people that use Facebook Nearby, the better the results will become.

What marketers should do to get the most out of Facebook Nearby:

  • Offer check-in or recommendation promotions that will broadcast to users’ friends and then use social media to follow up.
  • Claim and update local place pages and get local managers to start personalizing and posting on these pages.
  • Make sure the location’s physical address is listed on Facebook.
  • Monitor comments and report “rogue” pages.
  • More information on Facebook Nearby here and here.

 

Question 4: What’s the best way to go about claiming all of your locations on Facebook, Yelp, Google+ Local and Foursquare?

It is important to own your locations across all of these platforms so you can ensure the accuracy of information and monitor comments and reviews. But, with a lot of locations, it can be tedious. Services like knowem.com  will help you discover if your desired place name is available across networks.

There are two options for claiming:

  1. Get your agency to do it. Check out Room 214′s Facebook Parent Child Linking Service
  2. Do it manually. Find all of the claim pages here.

 

Question 5: What do you do on location to get your customers to engage with you?

A 2012 Shopper Engagement Study found that 76% of decisions are made in-store (which is a large increase from the 70% in 1995), making advertising on location even more important.

The best ways to get shoppers to engage with you in-store are:

  • Signage, signage, and more signage! Be sure that deals advertised online are visible in-store as well.
  • Integrate digital into the physical location – some restaurants put quotes from Yelp on their menus or signs.
  • Program messages into POS displays and be sure employees are talking about promotions.
  • Make a deal interesting and consistent across platforms.

 

Question 6: Are you running mobile search ads on Google?

Well, you should be. Ninety-five percent of smartphone users have searched for local information and eighty-eight percent of these users take action within a day.

Get started with several of these:

  • Google’s click to call ads are great, especially if your business offers products that are needed immediately such as food and hotels.
  • Start thinking about how you will leverage Google Now.
  • Create a simple mobile version of your website.
  • Take notes fromm these 25 killer examples of mobile marketing tactics.

 

What answer did you find most valuable? What questions do you still have? Let us know in the comments!

About Christy Barnes

Christy is a senior at the University of Colorado at Boulder majoring in Marketing with a minor in Economics. As the social media associate she helps support clients' digital marketing campaigns through research, reporting, content creation, quality assurance and execution. Outside of school and work, Christy enjoys travelling, snowboarding and photography.

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