For the first time, mobile devices are being used more often than PCs to find information on local products and services… The data shows that 60% of US adults now typically choose smartphones or tablets over PCs to find information before buying products and services offline. (Local Search Association)
Good morning, neighbors. For those of you who follow our hyperlocal media thread, you’ll find this news interesting but unsurprising. Unsurprising despite our remote location, often spotty (or nonexistent) connectivity, and the relatively unplugged lifestyle favored by many Essex area residents (and even by some visitors who migrate to our bucolic locale precisely to unplug!)
The forecast is clear. Mobile, mobile, mobile.
On the one hand it’s genuinely hard to believe that mobile searches springboard many local purchases. In Essex? No way! The stats don’t apply to us. After all, we’re exceptional in so many ways, right? Right.
So it’s fair to say that these statistics may not offer 100% accuracy for our rural community, but I suspect that Essex and neighboring communities are not so removed from this trend as we might initially expect.
I can’t offer statistical evidence, but over the last year or two I’ve been repeatedly surprised to witness the local proliferation of smartphones and a perceptible shift in behaviors that look more and more like national and international trends than North Country exceptions.
Amble down Main Street on a pleasant July or August day and you’ll soon discover that smartphones have become ubiquitous, even in Essex. Dip into Facebook or Twitter or Foursquare or just about any other popular social media “water cooler” and you’ll quickly discover that our region is broadly and frequently represented. You may not be updating Facebook or Instagram from your mobile device while waiting at the ferry dock, but others are. I expect that the most common non-telephone usage of smartphones is probably photography, but social media and Google (ie. local search) searches must, must be tied for second place.
Essex may trail the national mobile search trend, but empirical evidence suggests that we may not be trailing by as much as one would expect. And if indeed we’re trailing, then we stand to learn plenty in time to respond prudently. Take a look at the devices most frequently used when people search for local information.
That’s a tide change. A dramatic and quick tide change, and we would be wise to adapt now rather than wait because the forecast is clear. Mobile, mobile, mobile.
More and more offline spending is going to be influenced by mobile internet access and mobile advertising. This is the “why of local” that most marketers, brands and agencies still don”t fully understand — the online to offline connection. (Screenwerk)
More and more online and offline with integrate seamlessly. And it’s fair to assume that this predictable nationwide local search trend is slowly, inevitably finding its way to Essex. Understanding and leveraging this trend is an incredible opportunity for all of us. If you’re hoping to persuade visitors, tourists, vacation planners to consider your business, understanding this integration is long overdue. If you’re hoping to build better, more enduring , and more monetizable relationships with your local customers, then it would be wise to take notice of this trend now. And if you are a community leader, a public servant, or a civic influencer, it should be increasingly evident that it’s more imperative than ever before to fast-track more comprehensive, more reliable, more affordable connectivity.
Let’s all work together to become more mobile friendly, and we’ll all reap the rewards together. Are you ready?
- What We Talk about When We Talk about Mobile (digitalbookworld.com)
- 3 Ways to Reverse Tether Android, Share Android Mobile Internet (gadgetstouse.com)
- World Backup Day: Safeguard Your Data (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- 6 Hyperlocal Services For Booking a Babysitter (streetfightmag.com)
- 3 Tips for Launching a Hyperlocal PR Campaign (cision.com)
- 5 Ways Content Marketing Can Help Your Small Business Grow (collegefinancialaidadvisors.com)
- Thank You, Essex Blog Readers, Writers and Boosters (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)