For years, even decades, people have been obsessed with the idea of robots and smart technologies. We’re always dreaming of the incredible things we might be able to do in the future. The 1950s and 60s were seen as the ‘golden age of futurism‘. These technologies such as driverless cars, TVs on your wrist and factories run by machines was something that could only be dreamed of. But dreams of robots taking over everything in our lives might not be the best idea at the moment, especially for local online marketing.
It seems we’re now reaching the tip of the iceberg, as things dreamed of decades ago are now a reality. Google, Apple, and Tesla are all working on the technologies for driverless cars. Apple and Samsung are also in hot competition with each other over who can create the best smartwatch. Not to mention the online marketplace Amazon has automated so many of its delivery processes with robots. Reports even suggest that Amazon’s latest ventures is automating the delivery of products through drones delivering to your door.
You may have dabbled with some artificial intelligence that’s out there, and they can be very clever. My phone, for example, knows my habits of where I go. It knows at 5:30, I leave the office and go home. At this time, my phone suggests that I might need directions to get home. Clever, right? Apart from when it suggests that I go to work at 9 am on a Saturday.
So whilst some of these new technologies are clever and anticipate your every move; there are still a few things that require a little bit more of a human touch. I would argue that one of those things is Local Online Marketing.
Artificial Intelligence and Online Marketing
As a web design company in Sussex, we know plenty about making websites, as well as how to market local businesses online. We’re also working hard to make sure we stay ahead of the curve with new online marketing techniques. Whilst we do use quite a few clever technologies to refine our techniques, most of the SEO and Content writing we do is done by hand – no robots.
You might think that this is a little bit old-fashioned. But the problem is that in order to optimise content, the robots just haven’t got it right yet for writing quality content, especially for local businesses. These marketing giants have all the data on the internet, but they don’t know our local community as well as we do.
There are plenty of ‘marketing robots’ out there that try and help decide the best ways to market a business. Whilst this is incredibly useful, it’s not foolproof. Humans can’t possibly handle the huge amount of data there is out there. As a local business, you don’t want to look at all the data from around the world, you will probably want to focus on the communities around you first.
Unsurprisingly, there is software out there that can write the text for you on any topic, that’s 100% original and not plagiarised. But whilst this is handy and can save you a lot of time, it really misses out on one of the cornerstones of marketing itself.
Missing Out on the Human Connection
Word-of-mouth is still an incredibly powerful marketing tool. What’s more important in local business is not making sure you’re targeting the people with lots of content but making sure that you’re connecting with your customers and the community. With a number of different channels you can reach your customers through, it doesn’t take a computer to work out which ones are best for your business.
There is research that shows people still value human connection online. A blog post by Adweek shows that 84% of consumers still trust word of mouth over automated social media posts. As a local business, you can really use social media to make your business appear more human to your customers. Putting regular updates and faces in on your social media pages and website makes you appear more friendly. Going further and engaging with your followers on social media keeps your brand in their minds.
As a local business, you are much closer to your customers than the big businesses you could be competing with. However, this is one of the advantages that you have against them. So why not use social media and online marketing to make use of that and be more human.
So if you’re a local business in Sussex, or even the rest of the South East and you need help with your online marketing, we can help. Get in touch with us, and see what we can do for you.