Local marketing becomes a (digital) street fight!

More and more marketing is becoming “hyperlocal,” as more small businesses — and even some larger marketers — are availing themselves of the multiplying tools for location-specific marketing.

Every day, there’s a new development in digital that allows marketers to deliver information, drive awareness, post deals and discounts and otherwise drive business at the local level in ways that were unobtainable before.

At Apple’s recent developer’s conference, one of the flacked features of iOS5 was its ability to “geofence” — provide the user with alerts that are coordinated with his/her location.  If I get within range of a pharmacy, for example, a geofenced prompt can remind me to pick up a prescription.  Those are user-driven…but it’s a short step from there to marketing applicationssimilar to what Groupon is trying to establish with Loopt and Foursquare, where discounts are triggered by your location.

The possibilities are endless.  So is the potential for overload, for unwary consumers and marketers. That’s why content curation is one of the hot button topics among the digiterati lately: the idea of mechanisms that sort through the plethora of information out there to sift out the bits and chunks that are useful to the user.  That can logically extend to location- and need-state-based marketing, as well.

Imagine a platform that catalogs and digests your behaviors, and provides you with a digital ‘agenda’ that automatically updates itself, prompts you with reminders when you’re in proximity to a business or vendor that meets a need, and digs up discounts on products you’re sincerely interested in.  If it’s Monday, the app will know that’s your day for a grocery trip — and will prompt you with a shopping list based on your prior purchase patterns, show available coupons at your favorite stores, and even remind you when you’re walking past the local Kroger’s that you’ve got to pick up a few items.  And that store can disseminate proximity-triggered deals that will digitally drive walk-ins.

It’s closer than we might think.  And with the advent of the digital wallet, inevitable…and dynamic.  There will be a whole new universe of technology and commerce built around these developments, and the marketer who rides these trends will be most likely to reap the rewards.

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