By Adam Dorfman
Toward the end of 2014, one of the questions I started hearing repeatedly from marketing executives at brands with many locations is this: “How do I make my content more relevant and findable to local audiences?”
Increasingly, my answer is, “Look to your own workforce.” Your people are not only your eyes and ears on the ground, they are also crucial resources for maximizing the value of the converging worlds of content and local search.
If you are a brand with multiple locations, your own people understand local cultural nuances that can make your content more relevant to local markets. When Chicagoans refer to “the Bean,” they aren’t talking about food but rather a popular sculpture by Anish Kapoor that graces the city’s Millennium Park. In New York, the second Sunday in June means celebrating Puerto Rican Day with one of the largest parades in the city.
The Importance Of Understanding Local Nuances
Understanding local nuances is important because local search is a content play. The more authentic your local content is, the more credible your brand is at the local level. And credibility is essential to building the kind of trust that creates enduring customer relationships.
Let’s say you are a national restaurant chain with locations in Auburn and Tuscaloosa, Alabama. If you want to gain customers in Auburn, you had better customize your content to appeal to fans of the Auburn Tigers football team, and your Tuscaloosa locations absolutely need to fly the “Roll Tide” banner to appeal to the home campus of the University of Alabama. And every year, you need to circle the date of the Iron Bowl, a football game between the Auburn Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide that dates back to 1893.
To be sure, there are methods and tools that exist to help automate research, planning, and publishing local …read more