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The Small Business Guide to Geofencing Ads

What if you could turn every person who walks near your store into a paying customer? About 85% of Americans use a smartphone, and with geofencing marketing, you can find out who’s in your area and target ads directly to their mobile devices.

In this guide, we’ll review everything you need to know about geofencing so you can develop a strong mobile marketing strategy that brings in your ideal customers. Geofencing helps you boost brand awareness, increase foot traffic to your store, and skyrocket sales!

Sound like a plan? Let’s get started.

What is Geofencing Marketing?

Geofencing uses GPS technology to create a virtual radius around your business where you can push eye-catching and engaging digital ads to ideal customers that fall within that boundary. These ads appear across a multitude of websites and apps, creating a campaign-specific and broad-reaching.

You can set your ads to appear immediately or a little after someone enters the boundary, ensuring that your brand remains top-of-mind.

However, this is different from a term you may have heard called “geo-targeting,” which uses GPS technology to focus on a particular zip code or region. Though the two terms are used interchangeably, the strategies are vastly different. Geofencing is more specific than geo-targeting because it allows you to focus on customers whose mobile phones enter your particular radius, not just those registered to a particular area. 

There’s also “polygonal geo-targeting” which is sometimes called “polygoning.” This type of geo-fencing can help you learn more about your customers using their historical data and ultimately personalize their campaigns.

With geo-fencing and polygoning, you can target consumers in your boundary, appeal to their active interests, and turn them into paying customers.

You can learn more about how it works here.

The Benefits

Still unsure about using geofencing marketing for your business? Consider the benefits:

  • Precise Targeting and Personalization

    Why waste time placing ads in front of uninterested people two towns over (or halfway across the world)? You know the types of people who need your business, and geofencing gives you access to the right people based on their data and at the right time based on their location.

    Personalizing your ads could make it easier for you to resonate with consumers, too. In fact, over 70% of consumers prefer a personalized ad experience. People are starting to expect it!
  • Time It Right

    Consumers already spend hours every day on their mobile devices, so why not meet them there? Geofencing allows you to target customers through their mobile devices when they’re perfectly positioned for your business. If you’re using traditional location-based tactics, like billboards, there’s no guarantee your ideal customer will see it.
  • Better Ad Spend

    Precise targeting can help you spend your advertising budget more effectively. When you focus on customers that are most likely to convert, your ROI will start to rise.
  • Helpful Insights

    Geofencing can help you gather valuable data, too. You can use these insights to make improvements to your future campaigns. Otherwise, you could make costly mistakes that impact future sales.

    With geofencing, you can focus on the right target segment, boost engagement, and study messaging effectiveness. This gives you the data you need to refine and perfect your campaigns, increasing your ROI.

Geofencing Campaign Strategies

  • Advertise Upcoming Events

    Are you hosting an upcoming event, such as a fundraiser or limited-time sale? Use your geofencing campaigns to leverage the fear-of-missing-out (FOMO). Consumers will flock to your location to take advantage of your limited-time offers.

    For example, a car dealership can use geofencing ads to promote an upcoming auto show. A boutique can advertise an upcoming sale or fashion show. Either way, you’re giving consumers a need to visit your business before time runs out.
  • Focus on the Buyer’s Journey

    Remember, you can use geofencing to lead consumers along the buyer’s journey. It’s essential to find different points in their journey when advertising because it pushes sales.

    For example, someone recently in a car accident might research urgent care centers or auto body shops nearby. A personal injury lawyer can geofence around these locations. Then, the consumers will see the ads when they visit the urgent care or body shop. Geofencing allows you to connect with customers when they need you most.
  • Drive Nearby Foot Traffic

    Are you in an area where people walk by your store throughout the day? Maybe you’re located in a mall or busy shopping center. You can set a geofence around your business to encourage people to visit you when they’re in the area.

    For example, you can offer a 25% “today only” coupon to anyone who appears within your geofence. If a potential customer sees this ad when they’re nearby, why wouldn’t they go in?
Image of geofencing promo ad
  • Target Competitor Locations

    You can also use geofencing marketing to create a geofence around your competitor’s locations too. Consumers will see your ads the next time they approach a competitor’s store, giving you the chance to boost your brand awareness and potentially draw in their customers.

    Try to focus on your unique value proposition within your ad language. What can you offer that no one else can? This will help you stand out from competitors. 

    Once they see your value, you can start generating brand trust. In time, trust can become loyalty, allowing you to retain long-term customers, create repeat sales, and improve your ROI.
  • Support Existing Signage

    A geofencing campaign could support your traditional marketing methods, too. For example, do you have signs and billboards promoting your store? You can place a geofence around your static signs so people can see your digital ads and your static ads.

    Don’t forget to use personalized messaging within your ad language. You can reinforce the messaging in your static ads to encourage visitors to your store. Remember, you can also offer exclusive coupons to draw people in.

    The key is to keep your branding consistent between ads. Otherwise, you might confuse consumers, and they could think you were two different businesses altogether.

    By maintaining consistent branding, you can generate awareness and recognition. If potential customers remember your brand and who you are, the next time they need your product or service, they’ll go to you directly. 
  • Bring Them Back Again

    You can also use remarketing to bring people back to your store. Remarketing uses cookies to tag customers who visit your store or website, so you can set ads to appear in front of those visitors a few days or weeks later. You can invite people back to your store or show them the previously purchased products.

    With remarketing ads, it’s vital to use personalized messaging. Welcome people back to your store. Thank them for their previous purchase or visit, too.

    Consumers will feel like you’re talking to them directly and take notice. 

Geofencing Marketing: Your Guide to Drawing in Ideal Customers

Keep these benefits of geofencing marketing in mind so you don’t lose a chance to reach your ideal customers. You know who needs your business, and this tool allows you to target them in the most precise ways possible. Let AdCritter’s experts help you develop your first geofencing strategy. Contact us today to get started.

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