Micro-moments in the year of local search

January 4, 2017
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In 2017, marketers need to be present in consumers’ micro-moments. This means finding ways to be inviting, reassuring and useful in a local sense. What’s more, brands will have to do it while navigating a world that is, in many ways, divided.

A strange year indeed

2016 was an uncommonly turbulent year - a fact reflected in Google searches from around the globe. Whether people wanted to understand the Zika virus, Brexit or one of the many unfortunate celebrity deaths, Google’s top search results show that people the world over were struggling to keep up with a world in flux. Additionally, consumers were more likely than ever to search for goods, services and experiences near to them. These two distinct types of search share one rather large similarity: They show people want certainty.

Micro-moment intervention will enable businesses to become more relevant in a local sense, providing consumers with certainty and stability in a nearby, accessible, stress-free way. Intervening in micro-moments means warmly responding to anxious consumers’ needs, and to be findable in search results when consumers look for something near them, and to respond quickly to brand mentions across all online platforms.

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Consumers want stability

Think With Google states that 2016’s year in search was similar to 2008-9’s, in that the year’s upheavals left users needing reassurance. That’s why, TWG claims, in 2009 marketers responded with especially feel-good advertizing: To reassure and calm consumers, and to position brands as stable through changing times.

Similarly, TWG recommends that brands should intervene in consumer’s moments. This means focussing on local and near-me searches, so that brands have relevance within consumers’ micro-moments - those small but vital interactions which form the substance of their days: Getting a coffee, finding the nearest subway, meeting up with friends in a restaurant.