How Can Local SEO Help Large Companies Who Typically Focus On National Branding Campaigns

Leveraging Local Teams to Optimize a National Message to a Local Audience

In today’s episode, Bob, Jesse and Sue explain how a local SEO focus can benefit a national (or even global) campaign! Having the ability to deploy a message locally allows you to connect with people your larger message may have missed, allowing you to “think globally and act locally.” Therefore, local SEO can be an often overlooked aspect of a broader national marketing strategy!

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What you’ll learn

  • Why a national campaign may miss a local audience.
  • How having a local team in place can increase visibility for your message.
  • Why a local SEO focus can benefit even your large business!

Transcript for How Can Local SEO Help Large Companies Who Typically Focus On National Branding Campaigns – 95 –

Caleb Baumgartner: Welcome to Local SEO Tactics, where we bring you tips and tricks to get found online. I am Producer, Caleb Baumgartner, dropping in with another informative question and answer session with Bob, Sue, and Jesse. Today we explore the value of local optimization for national brands. We know that local SEO benefits small businesses, but can a large business optimize to take their national or global message local through SEO? We explore this very issue today. If you have a question for us, visit us at localseotactics.com/questions. We look forward to hearing from you. Thank you for listening and enjoy the show.

Jesse Dolan: Welcome back to Local SEO Tactics where you bring your tips and tricks to get found online. I’m here with Jesse Dolan, here with Bob Brennan, Sue Ginsburg. Sue, it looks like, are we’re back in Austin, Texas?

Sue Ginsburg: We are.

Jesse Dolan: I’m getting familiar with that background. All right. I finally nailed one. What do we got today for a topic?

Sue Ginsburg: Okay. Today’s question comes from a listener and a client who is Director of Marketing for the Texas region of her business, which is a national real estate company headquartered out of New York and her charge is to do the marketing for the Texas region. So the national company has a big marketing department who handles the awareness, the branding, and they do a great job at that, but what they don’t do is marketing for any of the locations. So this Director of Marketing for the Texas region came to us asking how can SEO help market the individual locations, their different offices? They’re launching an office in Austin, and want to know, “We need local marketing. We can’t just have national.” So that’s what I’d like to discuss today. Quote of the day to go along with that is, “Think globally. Act locally.”

Interestingly enough, that quote first came from a Scottish town planner in 1918, but became a little more well-known I don’t know, in the late eighties or nineties, when it became a favorite of Sir Paul McCartney. So, “Think globally. Act locally.” What we want to talk about today is talking about the difference of SEO for a local market versus SEO for the national brand awareness and the national presence. Why is that important? Well, local marketing and local offices, the individual locations, don’t always benefit just from knowing who the national brand is. They want to be known versus their competition in their own market. And that’s common for any business who has more than one location. You want to be marketing your location, and I know SEO can help that and that’s what we want to help our listeners know today. So the plan is, tell us how we can do that, Jesse. Tell us, Bob. And we want to know how to do local marketing for the individual locations so that people know, “In my location, that I’m the one that they want to go to.”

Jesse Dolan: Yeah. I’ll make a quick statement, Bob, and then throw it to you. I know you’ve got some thoughts and impressions on this topic, but the first thing that goes back to me and something that we’ve talked about historically, Bob, you and I have been business partners for decades and really this I think is a case of like inbound marketing versus outbound marketing. You’re saying, Sue, just to kind of reframe it up is these large companies sometimes think they can get by, that people will remember them when they need the product or service, right? And they don’t always realize people search for that product or service and if you’re not being found, you can’t get by just on the reputation or that New York marketing that doesn’t reach to Texas, right. If the person searching for that product, doesn’t know about you, good luck, good luck getting in front of them, right. Bob, what are your thoughts on that in general? I’ve got some to directly answer the question, but I think a little context first here is good.

Bob Brennan: Yeah. Yeah. It was probably about seven years ago, we had a project for a specific model of a vehicle and it isn’t this, but I’ll just use this as an example, like Corvette, this again is a rogue example, it’s not what we did, but it’d be like finding, go into Google and typing in Corvette repair and Chevy dealers aren’t coming up. And our clients, with all our work that we did, did come up and more importantly, we had great reviews, a higher volume of reviews, and then the dealer and/or dealer wasn’t even showing up in the GMB, so to speak. So, and Sue, you mentioned this to me, before we got on the podcast, you’ve got to get registered for the GMB. If we’re not even in the GMB, that’s where the battle begins.

And then you’ve got to get your reviews and you’ve got to make sure they’re good reviews and you got to … bottom line, you got to take care of the customer, but then you’ve got to self promote through the GMBs and that self promotion has to be done locally. And then you have to find somebody that owns it. So the way I would view a local SEO is almost like going to war. You’ve got your generals that are running the show at the national market or national headquarters in New York or Washington, wherever that might be, but then you’re going to need your lieutenants in each of your major let’s say NFL markets to own that, at least the review and the GMB side, right, and then you got to have a talented team or individuals like Jesse that can help you market in that local SEO piece, right? And to show up for those terms, whatever they might be for not only the city you’re in, but obviously the surrounding suburbs and so forth.

So I don’t know that they have that Madison Avenue, so to speak, has that outlook, but if, and maybe they’re fine and can get by with the margins they have and everything else with just a general overview. But I got to believe you could squeak another 10, 20% sales just by imploring kind of call in your Navy seals or special forces in each of these markets for that local SEO. I got to believe the ROI is there, so.

Sue Ginsburg: I think that translates just to that, the more local you get, it’s more granular, like you’re saying, whether that be in a military perspective or that Madison Avenue type deal, I think as organizations scale and get larger with multiple locations and wider geographic footprint, I mean, they’re looking for solutions that just are deployable, right? The success that I’m marketing was that this campaign is now operating and all of these cities, but there’s differences in each city, there’s differences within the suburbs of each city, right? In this case, for a, realtor type deal and you got to have people in those areas, understanding those differences and then still taking those top orders for the marketing, but then making it work for that local area. You’re hitting the nail on the head, as we always say, the number one thing local is you’ve got to get in that GMB, right?

So some of this is discussion, Sue. Some of it is direct answer. I mean, like one of the number one things, bullet points for the answer part is get on the GMB, right. For sure. And then of course, some kind of website to tie into that, to actually do the SEO, to get long tail on some of the searches, making pages for the various topics you want to be found for, the keywords you want to be found for. And then that whole synergy of your GMB and your website should be talking the same talk, using the same kind of phraseology. And if there is seasonal or kind like you’re saying Bob, more campaign driven stuff, that’s happening on both, they tie in together. That’s the secret is, at the end of the day, again, you have to recognize people in that local market are going to Google to find that product or service. You have to be in front of them.

So, if you’re not doing that intentionally, marketing for that city, marketing for that product or service in that city, on a website, non-energy MB, you’re just not going to be found. The people that may know of you, we’re going to contact you anyways. You’re looking to grow and tap into the people that didn’t know you existed that are just looking for a solution. That’s where it’s got to be. And again, not to discount at all, when I say GMB, Bob, I definitely mean reviews, like you’re saying, right. That’s a huge part. And being in the GMB, being ranked in the GMB, like we’ve said before, countless times, Bob, even if you’re third on the ranking for any given search, you can have more reviews than the other two people. You’re going to get that click. You’re going to get some attention there. So a mix of be in the GMB, get as many reviews as you can, and start working on your website with local content, local pages, local face, local based intent. And, Sue, that should be a good recipe for a large company to penetrate.

Wouldn’t really get tricky with any top secret tactics or any other strategies. I think just again, to Bob’s point, is large companies usually just miss this granular fact and just doing it, they’re already going to have a large entity and a brand and trust and the EAT, EAT factors. They just didn’t take it down to that ground level, the battlefront type territory. And if they can just do that, they should be able to take that large momentum of that brand and knock out some of the competitors that were dominating before and just throw their weight around on that local level, so.

Bob Brennan: Yeah. And I can just add one or two things here and Sue you’ve seen this in that 30 years ago, it was all about ad spend. It was all about TV ads. It was all about national newspapers and periodicals and magazines and everything else. I don’t even know if my kids know what a periodical is, but at any rate, if you listen to Seth Golden’s podcasts, it’s a great podcast, but he talks about this transition in that marketing directors and stuff with large companies, it’s just, “What’s your ad spend? How much TV time do you have?” And everything and it was so focused on that for a bigger brand picture.

Well, and Google has evolved over 20 plus years and that it basically is localizing just about every search. You don’t need to put a city in, right? You can put in hamburger restaurant near me, right. Or just hamburger restaurant and it’s going to automatically draw that bullseye around you and keep spiraling out, but it’s going to give you searches that are closer to you. And if you know, if Madison Avenue doesn’t understand that again, I’d say they’re missing out at least 10, probably 20% of all potential customers that they could be getting, so.

Sue Ginsburg: Well, I think also to add to the point of the local, each individual local market may or may not have the same footprint as HQ. You take Madison Avenue and what are people looking for in real estate there versus ranches in Montana. You’re going to totally turn them off unless you do localize it to them because they don’t want to be dealing with something that’s an apartment in a high rise. They’re looking for land and space. You’ve got to talk to that.

Bob Brennan: Right. Good point.

Jesse Dolan: I think to your point too, Bob, that, we’re just kind of picking numbers and quantifying benefits at 10, 20% bump, it’s the harder 10 or 20% for them to get, right, because they have to get more complicated, more local, more nuanced for each market versus the template that just works for everything. But that’s what you got to do, right? You know what I mean, there’s just no easy way to do that. You have to get accustomed to Montana. You have to get accustomed to Texas. You have to be accustomed to Madison Avenue to get to that part of it, which is why we find again, back to the front side of the conversation, why we find these larger brands, typically aren’t whether that’s, they just say, “You know what, we’re fat and happy getting the big chunk here. And we don’t need to get to that 10 or 20%,” whatever projecting of course, but maybe that’s the case.

But to Sue’s question, if they want to get down there and get to that, they’ve got to get a little more complicated, a little more customized, a little bit trickier blueprint, but that’s the name of the game and final thought for me here, Bob is on your deal. Google’s getting more complicated every day with their algorithm, with their machine learning and their AI. They’re getting more customized if you will, more localized. So there’s just no going back. If you want to crack into the local markets, you got to play the local game.

It doesn’t matter how big or small of a brand you are in general, which is kind of good for the rest of us. It really does level the playing field a bit too, right? Back in the day like you’re saying, a local real estate agent wouldn’t be able to compete. It was all about ad spend and face time, eyeball time. But now that it’s not, now that it’s a little bit more flat, a little more level. If they can dominate the local game, they can suddenly compete with a Madison Avenue brand. That’s the flip side of it. So there you go, Sue, hopefully that answers the question for you satisfactory there for all that.

Sue Ginsburg: Yeah. And a respect to this marketing director who realized that and is taking it local and knows, “Hey, we need to set up our GMBs. We need to optimize those and get those working for us with whatever SEO we can do on those two, because that’s where it’s going to be happening.

Jesse Dolan: Got to be in it to win it.

Sue Ginsburg: Austin, Dallas, Houston. Right. So, okay. If you remember one thing, and one thing only from this discussion, national marketing may help brand awareness, but it will not drive leads and traffic to your individual location. For that, you need local SEO and you want local eyeballs on it and not the national brand awareness or I’ll say in conjunction with the national brand awareness, not just the national brand awareness and think globally act locally. Sir Paul had that right? You want to drive leads and traffic to your location, not necessarily the national website. And with that, turn it back to you. And I can’t help throwing in there since we’re talking about a quote from Sir Paul, let’s just let it be.

Jesse Dolan: Nobody’s going to sing. I was just waiting.

Sue Ginsburg: Okay, go ahead you guys.

Bob Brennan: I got no singing voice.

Jesse Dolan: This is a podcast. We just talk.

Bob Brennan: I’m the guy at the birthday party, who’s singing Happy birthday and people are kind of staring at out of the corner of their eyes, like, “Really?”
Jesse Dolan: Really? Why is that guy louder than everybody else too? Now I was going to say too, Man, if there was only a company that could help with Local SEO Tactics, I just don’t know. I don’t know who that would be.

Sue Ginsburg: If only.

Jesse Dolan: Okay. In all seriousness though, hopefully that helps everybody out, out there. Not everybody’s a large Madison Avenue brand, but these tactics we’re talking about back to the core GMB, local SEO tactics type stuff. It’s true. No matter how big or small you are. So hopefully that helps some people out. If you are out there having a question, we would love to hear it from you. Go on at thelocalseotactics.com. Go down in the bottom left corner. To submit a question, you can just type your question in, send it off, Sue’s going to get it. We’re going to read it on the show and address it just like we’re doing here.

If you’d like to take it to the next step, we’d love for you to call in and record that question on a voicemail. We’ll play it. We’ll use the audio on the show. If you do that, we’re going to send you one of these fancy Intrycks t-shirts and thank you for doing that. So if it’s not too much to ask, if you want to put yourself out there, we’d love to get the audio and play it on the show. But if not, hey, just submit your question. We’ll be sure to get it on here, help you out, because if you have a question or problem guaranteed somebody else out here in the community does too, and we’re looking to help. So thanks for the question submitted and thanks for everybody for tuning in listening. We’ll catch you on the next episode, okay.

Bob Brennan: Bye.

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