Home. Family. Community. Three words that rang clear in our global crisis. During lockdown, protective of what unites us, we were comforted by the authenticity of belonging. A strong sense of place gave us identity and meaning. The 2020 Canadian E-Commerce Report indicates more Canadians plan to shop locally. They also plan to shop online more. Online shopping habits accelerated in lockdown – as we relied on e-commerce for access and convenience. In recovery, it will be important for brands to merge access with authenticity – balancing global economics with local safety and prosperity.
Glocalization is the future
Glocalized brands blend worldwide standardization and local responsiveness. Emphasizing local strategies can drive product adaptations, deepen brand meaning and enhance differentiation. Consumers have been inspired by farmers’ markets, community gardens and 100-km menus, while local has underlined the authenticity of craft culture. Local will become a priority – with regional ecosystems generating self-sufficient economies that boost community welfare and global competition. Getting globalization right is the next era of competitive advantage.
Build trust, stand out and connect locally
A more connected and consistent world experience means people long to rediscover what’s original and unique. This often leads to local. To build trust and competitive advantage, brands need to stand for something universal, connect personally and act locally.
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Get personal by tailoring your products and message
A homogenized, global approach no longer works in a world that’s increasingly personalized, diversified and inclusive. What used to be about manufacturing scale and standardization is now about tailoring product and message to audience context.
Strengthen your local marketing efforts
Pay attention to localized search data and adapt your brand response where you can. Work on your agility, so you can tailor messaging, timing, products and offers to meet customer needs and local market conditions. Integrate mobile, first-party and geolocation data to improve local targeting. Use targeted media to amplify standardized mass media with localized offers. Consider how customer service, micro-influencers and collaboration with community partners can strengthen local marketing.
Seek inspiration from global brands that connect locally
We love these global brands who understand the business value of connecting locally:
- Uniqlo knows what it means to be global and local. The brand has created neighbourhood store-within-a-store experiences to better tell its story in different markets.
- Showing great resilience during crisis, Lululemon has created authentic relationships globally through a local ambassador program that connects with communities both online and off.
- Molson has turned #VirtualHappyHour into community support, asking Canadians to RAISE ONE FOR YOUR LOCAL. The brand rewards people hosting a video meet-up with friends or family with a gift card to use locally.
Use integrated direct mail and data to target and connect with customers locally
Embedded in local communities through postal code data, direct mail helps you reach brand users in precisely targeted, personalized and integrated ways. Use it to optimize geographic and psychographic targeting with first-party and geolocation data. Foot traffic is down and drive routes interrupted. Brands will need to reach out locally to tempt customers back to stores or encourage them to buy online. With interest in local shopping and sourcing increasing, postal codes are an invaluable asset in the marketing data stack. We’re making more purchase decisions and more purchases at home. Connecting data to direct mail and integrating it with other media channels makes local adaption more effective and relevant.
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