Geo Marketing

Geo Marketing deals with the geographical conditions in marketing. Regional aspects affect the entire marketing mix with product range, price, distribution and communication policy and thus almost every area of ​​the company.


With the help of geo-marketing, marketing decisions are geared to spatial structures in a wide variety of ways.

Big city-countryside comparison

Existing and potential markets are analyzed so that they can be addressed more specifically. For example, people in big cities tend to be willing to pay a higher price for a product than people in rural areas (pricing policy).

In large cities, it is particularly important that a supermarket is easily accessible by public transport. In rural areas, this is of secondary importance; here, the size and proximity of the parking lot usually count (distribution policy).

Data material

Such subtleties of the markets are worked out and analyzed on the basis of extensive data material within the framework of geo-marketing and thus used for a targeted addressing of the target groups. This data material includes, for example, statistical data such as:

  • population figures
  • number of households
  • age structure
  • proportion of foreigners
  • unemployment rate
  • vehicle stock
  • Purchasing power or average household income
  • building structures
  • local businesses
  • living environment
  • Flows of commuters on the streets

Examples and areas of application

The application possibilities for geo marketing are very extensive. The data can be used to answer the following questions, for example:

  • In which regions is the target group most strongly represented?
  • Where should new branches or locations be strategically opened?
  • In which regions are the largest sales concentrated?
  • Where is there untapped potential that could be activated through increased advertising?
  • What catchment area does a company’s customers come from?
  • Is the current location cleverly chosen or would it make sense to move it?
  • Could the sales force optimize their work and make it more efficient through better area management and more skilfully selected tours?
  • Into which sales areas should the catchment area be divided?
  • What competitors are in the area?
  • Which communication policy methods are best received in which region?
  • Where is it worth offering location-based services (e.g. coupons via smartphone app)?
  • In which regions have sales decreased or increased?
  • Is the company’s offer adapted to the target group in the region or are modifications necessary in order to exploit the full potential?

Geomarketing with Foursquare

Foursquare (German: four squares) is a social network based on the GPS localization of mobile devices such as smartphones, mobile phones and tablets. More than 45 million people and 1.6 million entrepreneurs worldwide use Foursquare; every day several million check-ins occur in venues.

How Foursquare works

Foursquare is mainly used via mobile devices. Accordingly, free apps are available for Android and iOS devices, BlackBerrys, Windows Phones and Palms. In addition, the technical platforms of PlayStation Vita, Symbian, WebOS and Bada are covered. Users log into Foursquare and as soon as they go to a certain place (venue), they “check-in” there. They tell other users where they are.

Venues can be any location in the area, e.g. B. sights, shops, restaurants or squares. Users can use Foursquare to get inspiration for the best places to eat in town, plan a weekend getaway, or find out how others rate a place. Your own check-ins and information reappear for friends of yours.

What sets Foursquare apart from other social networks is the playful aspect. For each check-in, the “players” earn points. You can earn various badges, such as the following:

  • Superstar: check-in at 50 different venues
  • Crunked: four check-ins in one night
  • Bender: four check-ins in four consecutive nights
  • Local: three times the same check-in in one week
  • Superuser: 30 check-ins in a month

Additionally, players can become the mayor of a venue if they record the highest number of check-ins to the venue in a two-month period.

Foursquare for business

Many companies are listed on Foursquare without having registered themselves. Users who have checked into the venues are responsible for the entries. However, business owners can take ownership of their venue and thus control the published content.

In particular, they can deposit a type of business card in which, in addition to their address and telephone number, they also have a company description, opening hours, a web address, links to other social media profiles, menus, service offers and additional information for users to call up.

Foursquare advertising

In addition to the company profiles, entrepreneurs can advertise on Foursquare. It is characterized by the fact that it is displayed to the users precisely when they are, for example, in the immediate vicinity of the respective shop or restaurant.

The advantage of the so-called Foursquare Ads is that the advertiser is not paid a flat rate for their ad, nor is it paid according to the number of views, but only according to the corresponding reactions to the advertisement.

As is known from similar advertising networks, entrepreneurs can call up various statistics in order to keep an eye on their budget and at the same time be able to evaluate the response rates to the advertising measures.

Brand Pages

Foursquare can also set up brand pages. For example, they offer companies that do not have their own branches the opportunity to present themselves on the social network. Depending on the individual objective of the brand pages, users can often purchase so-called “brand badges” here. For example, museum fans who visit New York’s Museum of Modern Art three times are awarded the Art Addict badge.

Geomarketing with Foursquare

Companies that are listed on Foursquare can offer their visitors incentives to shop in their store as often as possible (e.g. discount coupons, small customer gifts when shopping). In addition, Foursquare offers the possibility to analyze how many of the visitors are first-time buyers, occasional customers or regular customers. The GPS function of the mobile end devices can be used to find out more about the customers’ spatial structures.

Foursquare offers various evaluation options for this, which show the success of geo-marketing.

Geomarketing with Facebook Places

The Facebook Places service was launched on August 18, 2010, and has also been available for mobile devices on Android, iOS and Blackberry devices since October 2010.

How Facebook Places Works

Facebook Places is not an independent service, but rather part of the social network Facebook. If users post a status message, they can use Facebook Places to automatically attach their location to the post so that all friends can see where the user is at the moment. This function is only available for end devices that have an activated GPS unit.

Until August 2011, there was also the option to “check-in” to places, similar to Foursquare. In addition, from November 2010, users were able to use Facebook Deals, through which they could take advantage of coupons and other promotions in the companies concerned via their smartphones. However, both functions were turned off in August 2011 and replaced by geo status. Facebook Deals has been replaced by Facebook Offers.

Geomarketing with Facebook Places

Basically, geo-marketing with Facebook Places works in the same way as Foursquare. Users create any locations they have visited. Businesses can claim these if they are the owner. They also have the option of linking their company’s fan page and their Facebook Places entry.

Companies can use Facebook Insights, the page statistics of the service, to carry out a variety of evaluations with regard to their fans. If it is a Places entry, people who have already visited the store can also be analyzed. This makes it possible to provide targeted offers for interested parties according to their personal interests.

Importance of online marketing

Geo-marketing is particularly important for companies that are based and operate locally, for example for regional service providers, craftsmen and stationary retailers. For smaller companies, the marketing tool is just as relevant as e.g. B. for large textile retail chains with several hundred branches.

Especially with the background of the spread of topics such as big data and the associated, better availability of extensive user data, it can be assumed that the importance of geo-marketing, especially for online marketing, will increase sharply in the future.

There are many data sources available for this area, making targeting audiences increasingly easy. Advertising can be placed with minimal wastage, which means that costs can be reduced in the long term.

There are also many other aspects that make geo-marketing noticeable on the Internet, including:

  • Display of websites in the language of the user depending on their origin
  • Regionally different SERPs in Google (e.g. when searching for “eye doctor”, the Berlin eye doctor will be displayed in Berlin, while the Munich eye doctor will see eye doctors in Munich)
  • Distribution of coupons via social media services

In 2011, 90% of marketing agencies in the US had clients requesting geo-targeted online ad campaigns. 65% of companies already include geographic context in their mobile marketing strategy. Local marketing is also significantly cheaper than classic SEM.


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