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Hyperlocal earned media: Why it should be part of your strategy in 2024
Sector: Consumer
Hyperlocal

“It is the folly of too many to mistake the echo of a London coffee-house for the voice of the kingdom” said Jonathan Swift in 1667 and yet these words feel more pertinent than ever.

 

As a PR agency headquartered outside of London we’ve always understood that life does not stop outside the M25. And in the last five years we’ve seen a seismic shift in many others feeling the same. Since the pandemic people have been leaving the capital in droves. Indeed, estate agency Hamptons have called it the largest exodus in “at least a generation.”

 

These social changes mean marketers are being forced to confront the fact that real families across the length and breadth of the country have different aspirations, motivations and inspirations than those who live on the tube network.

 

At a time when brands are having to fight harder for share of wallet than ever before, there can be no doubt that demonstrating relevance to consumers is critical. And this isn’t just about marketing. The Grocer wrote on the cost-of-living crisis noting, “sticking solely to brand awareness campaigns at a national level misses the mark in two ways: it fails to take advantage of fresh opportunities to drill down locally from afar and creates a disconnect at the point of sale.”

 

It’s becoming increasingly hard to see how a campaign that resonates with a London family can tick the box for one in the Northeast when the income gap between London and rest of the UK is at a record high, with households in London holding three times the national average disposable income.

 

The bastion of marketing excellence, the Cannes Lions has even introduced a new compulsory criteria this year; cultural context – with brands seeking accolades being asked to prove why their campaign is relevant, in this market at this moment in time. It will be interesting to see how hyper local nuances play out here.

 

I’m not campaigning here for the rejection of nationally focused mass market approaches.  But when we look at insight around community, connection and clear direct calls to action, hyper local can play a valuable supporting role.

 

Hyperlocal PR has always been a pivotal part of our offer at Speed and we’ve delivered large scale local activation for brands as diverse as Virgin Media, The Entertainer and Aviva. For us, hyper local is never just the last part of the media strategy.

 

Here’s five things to think about when deciding if going local could work for you:

1. Underperforming Regions: A struggling area? Consider a hyperlocal project to understand and connect with the local audience.

2. Social Testing: Use targeted social media posts to test hyperlocal ideas before going full-scale.

3. “Near Me” Power: Google data shows “near me” searches have grown 150% faster than comparable searches.  Use this to localise your paid strategy and make your brand regionally relevant.

4. Local Spokesperson: Build a human face for your brand through a local spokesperson profile building programme. This works wonders for retail brands.

5. Multichannel Synergy: Combine PR, digital, and experiential elements in a hyperlocal campaign for maximum impact.

 

Want to explore what hyperlocal can do for you? Drop me a line at Rebecca.broomfield@speedcomms.com