October 1, 2009

What Is Local To You?

Location Location Location?

In my twenty-five years of marketing and media, I have heard one phrase uttered more often than any other: Be Local.

It was how you differentiated yourself from national outlets.

Market and demographic were used to describe the audience, listener or reader. It wasn't about home or humans.

Local referred to the geographic location of a business and its customers.

I have realized that my view of "local" has changed. It is has become less about geography. It is more about what is local and important to me.

Buddies For Life

You may have attended university in another city. The relationships you formed during that time remain local to you. You may have moved hundreds of miles away and never visited the campus after graduation day, but all your touch points to that experience are still local to you.

Perhaps you love your car so much you have joined an online community devoted to lovers of that model and you have formed relationships with other owners and perhaps even planned outings and events. That is a community that is local to you.

Know Your Locals

It is crucial you realize this fact if you are running a business. It’s not enough to be in a market without activating the power of the local community. There is a chain of coffee shops here that is competing quite nicely with two major international chains, because they are local to us.

If you own a destination business - such as a hotel or resort, then it’s important to realize that your local community is anyone who wants to visit your destination. So you need to be local to them.

Emotion vs. Location

We need to keep finding ways to allow our growing online relationships a place to flourish that make it feel local to us.

The size of your community is boundless and what is local to you may have become more of an emotional and mental attachment rather than a spot on some map.

What is local to you?


image credit: skagitriverjournal.com

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© Kneale Mann knealemann@gmail.com people + priority = profit
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