Ninety-one percent of national brands expect to invest more or the same amount in local marketing heading into 2013, according to a new survey by local marketing firm Balihoo.
Of those surveyed, 47.3 percent of brands said they plan to invest more in local marketing for 2013 than they did in 2012. According to Balihoo numbers, much of that investment will go into mobile local marketing.
Over 34 percent of surveyed participants expect to use mobile as a major local marketing tactic in 2013. That number represents a slight increase from last year when only 32 percent of those surveyed said that mobile was a main tactic for their local marketing agenda.
While mobile tactics are expected to be up next year, local search registration and local website investment is expected to go down in 2013. Balihoo's research says that local search registration tactics usage will become less of a factor by almost 3 percent next year. While local website tactics will see a steep decline from 46 percent usage to about only 16 percent.
According to Balihoo, national brands with annual revenues of over $500 million are using a broader range of local marketing tactics when compared to smaller firms. However, the research also points out that those brands earning an average revenue of $100 million to $250 million are more likely to use social media more often.
"Balihoo's survey results are in line with other industry research showing the growing importance of local marketing for national brands, but what's particularly interesting is how national brands are prioritizing their local marketing tactics," said Balihoo Chief Executive Pete Gombert.
"When it comes to digital tactics, we found that local websites and local search registration are not top priorities for national brands, yet they form the foundation for a strong local marketing infrastructure. We also see there is a lot of opportunity for national brands to better lead and support their local channel partners. CMOs and marketing managers should look more closely at these aspects of their local marketing programs as they plan ahead for 2013."
Balihoo's study also found that 87 percent of national brands are not properly represented on local affiliate websites. The research found that only 4 percent of national brands surveyed felt that local marketing affiliates had an excellent grasp on marketing tactics. This could be the reason why over 48 percent of national brands don't rely on local affiliates for marketing purposes.
National brands surveyed said that SEO, mobile marketing, and PPC were the areas that they felt local affiliates lacked expertise. Over 53 percent of those surveyed reported that local affiliates lack the ability to properly execute marketing plans on mobile platforms.