Local Activation Meets Brand Consistency

Large, multi-location brands struggle with the competing need to both retain brand-level control and consistency while ensuring that each individual location can achieve success. This is especially complicated when Facebook advertising enters the picture. Most locations have already created their own Facebook Business Page and want to drive ads directly from it to garner attention to their location. And that make sense when you factor in things like:

  • Driving customers to the correct address
  • Location-specific offers
  • Local events, such as a high school football game that could impact foot traffic on a Friday night

What About Brand-Level Needs?

Those legitimate desires to drive location-specific messaging are complicated when you add in the brand’s desire to put out a consistent message, look and feel and overall experience in each of their locations.

Furthermore, if funding for ads is done at the brand level, it makes the logistics of location-based ads tricky for everyone involved. And if the brand wants to disperse the advertising budget dynamically across the locations, such that under-performing locations can get larger percentages of the spend, well, then the brand is forced to figure out how to manage each location’s needs centrally.  For brands with 5 or 10 locations, that may be doable. But for brands with hundreds or thousands of locations, that scenario simply isn’t an option. The time and resource needed to manage the setup and management of that many  campaigns would be, flatly, impossible. It’s a dilemma.

But Does it Really Matter?

At Tiger Pistol, we wanted to figure out if this dilemma was real or imagined, anecdotal or scientifically proven. We decided to do some testing to see if, in fact, ads run at the local level really did outperform those managed centrally by the brand – which means, they  included no location-specific details. We ran tests with several hundred locations and learned quite a lot.

The Results Are In

In short, it DOES matter.

Aggregate Results: on average, ads run off the local Facebook Business Page outperformed the ads run at the brand level by at least 2x. This, while also decreasing costs by 50%.

Case Study #1: National Home Builder
Ad Objective: Local Awareness (Reach)

The ad run at the brand level had a cost per thousand (CPM) of $12, while the ad run at the local level with local-specific copy, achieved a CPM of $2.51.

Case Study #2: Local Retail
Ad Objective: Traffic

The ad run at the brand level delivers a cost per click (CPC) of $0.62 while the ad run at the local level delivered a CPC of $0.43.

Case Study #3: Real Estate
Ad Objective: Traffic to Website

The Ad run at the brand level delivered a click through rate (CTR) of 1.28% while the ad run at the local level delivered a CTR of 3.51%

Now What?

If you’re a multi-location brand operator, you’re probably left feeling a little bereft by this news. We just validated what you probably already inherently knew or had seen happen with a handful of your locations. When done well, local ads drive local activation better than a generic ad promoting the brand as a whole.

Here’s the good news: Tiger Pistol can help you run brand-level campaigns that can be localized for the highest impact (and sorry for the shameless self-promotion, but it’s true). If you’re working with a partner or agency to help with your digital marketing, let them know this is what you need and ask them to get in touch. If not, give us a call and we’ll give you a demonstration!