Localization Playbook For Advertisers: 4 Powerful Plays

Performance marketers already know that local advertising on Social works better than global campaigns.

But, if you want to execute a successful localization campaign, you’re faced with two basic challenges: how do you produce the required number of assets, and how do you actually get those ads into a campaign.
Furthermore, the overarching problem is speed. Even if you can produce all the assets, what happens when you need to update them? It would take hours to produce, and then a day or two to launch them.

With localization, advertisers can deliver engaging and personalized ads that result in better engagement, lower CPM and CPC.

So what stops all advertisers from doing this?

The sheer amount of time and costs involved to adapt a creative for all locations while making sure it’s relevant to the audience and on-brand is staggering. And losing access to other data points means the creative has to do the heavy lifting so ideally, you’d need hundreds of variations of the creative to prevent ad fatigue.

But put automation into the mix and advertisers have an easy and effective way to display the right content to the most relevant audience based on their location.

Localization creates a win-win scenario for both consumers that don’t want to give up privacy and advertisers that don’t want to give up on personalization.

What elements can advertisers localize?

Localization-pt2-asset1While the plays below can be used as-is, your industry might require the localization of elements other than the ones mentioned here.

So what can you localize? Everything! From in-house ad copy to third-party data, any data feed you plug into Hunch’s dynamic creative system can be used to localize your ads.

Here’s a non-exhaustive list:

  • Product information
  • Product photos
  • Location, city, neighborhood
  • Location backgrounds
  • Store locations
  • Time of day
  • Price for different locations
  • Price in different currencies
  • Ad copy for:
    • Locations used
    • Languages
    • Cities mentioned
    • Dates mentioned
    • Different Demographics
    • Purchase funnel stage
  • Landing Page URLs + different UTMs
  • Third-party data
    • Weather 
    • Betting odds
    • Real-estate 
    • Any other real-world data
  • Demography

Having the ability to localize elements to such a granular level, also solves another problem that plagues brands - maintaining brand governance.

Brand governance enables brands to monitor and maintain consistency, relevance, and efficacy across every touchpoint. Without the capability to localize every single ad element, it becomes harder to stay relevant in niche markets where local competitors are vying for the same audience segment.

Take maintaining design consistency for example - it goes way beyond knowing what colors, font size, and family to use. It includes how long should an ad stay on a platform, if the video ad should feature text, real people or animations, and so much more.

4 Retail Power Plays: Why you should use them + How to

Localization-4-power-plays2After running hundreds of successful campaigns, saving months in creative production and launch, and working with some of the best brands - UGG, Auto Bavaria, and Lampenlicht - we’re now sharing the exact plays we use to help brands unlock performance and growth.

Play #1: Promote product delivery using localized targeted creative

71% of shoppers say personalization increases their likelihood of purchase (Facebook for Partners).

So why not reel them in through localized creatives?

If you’re targeting a particular neighborhood or city or state, find out what makes people tick - a phrase, a local saying, prominent places, or even the skyline. Inauthentic, superficial attempts to localize ads are instantly ignored. So if you’re not familiar with cultural nuances, you lose relevancy points in that region. Focus on audience research to come up with ideas for creatives and keep cycling through them to A/B test them on your audience.


Try local asset customization - a single template to create and launch 100s of location personalized ads through a centralized sheet.

What you can expect: Reduce CPM, drive more engagement and reduce production costs and launch times.

Mini Case Study: Genero reduces CPL by 82% and CAC by 62% with Hunch

Genero, a global creative platform for marketers, is running 700 Facebook ads for one of their clients using Hunch.

Localization-pt2-asset3Targeting different audiences based on their city locations

Here's what it did to their results 👇

Lead campaign:
The cost per lead dropped from around $12.50 to $2.20.

Purchase campaign:
CAC dropped from around $79 to $42. After updating creatives, the CAC dropped even further to $30.

 

2 campaigns. 230 ad groups. 700 ads. That's a monstrous structure to manage if you do it manually. We scaled spending, improved results, and reduced our workload by using Hunch to automate campaign and ad delivery,” shares Heiman Safeen, Senior Growth Marketer at Genero.

Localization-pt2-asset4Different age groups are served with different localized ads

Safeen also adds, “There are more aspects to the campaign that made it successful, such as geo-targeting, localized ads, and ad group level budget optimization. But none of this would be possible to do (or it would be extremely inefficient) without automating the tedious parts of running a campaign like content creation and publishing the actual ads."

Play #2: Promote store locations and products with advanced formats

Although advertisers design linear purchase funnels, those in the know understand that it’s never that simple.

What one expects: Customer sees an ad -> Clicks on it -> Visits the landing page -> Buys the product -> Becomes a superfan.

What actually happens: Customer searches for a product online -> sees a generic ad -> doesn’t click on it -> sees another crappy ad -> doesn’t click on it -> sees an ad that for a local store -> clicks on it -> finds the information they need -> physically purchases the product.

A combination of the pandemic-induced isolation and wanting to support local businesses have influenced customer behavior - shoppers are more likely to purchase from a local store.

Research from Data & Marketing Association (DMA) found that over half the people surveyed continue to buy locally even after the relaxation of lockdown restrictions. 58% of Britons want to support their local economy and 21% prefer the convenience of reduced travel.

“Localism” and sustainability are emerging trends not just in the UK but the whole world.

But how can you use this to influence your ad localization?

Use advanced formats for these ads. Instead of using a simple creative to engage users, include similar products they might be interested in, the exact location, map, and direction.

Localization-pt2-asset6Get more people into your store by encouraging them to visit the one that's closest


Play #3: Promote seasonal collections using weather and location data

A new reason why someone might hide your ad on Facebook: ”knows too much”.

Localization-pt2-asset8A Catch-22 situation for advertisers - shoppers want personalized ads but not ads that know too much about them.

Localization-pt2-asset7

Sunny outside? The right SPF product is just what you need for a walk outdoors

So, what can you do? Brands looking to try a new storytelling format should look at using weather data in ads because they capitalize on the “we know how you feel” tactic.

Mini Case Study: Orange offers bigger discounts as it gets warmer

We’ve all seen ads that use weather to drive conversions. But changing offers based on the temperature? To increase product purchases for their telco client, Orange, a global growth marketing agency, Data Revolt decided to try something radical and tie discounts to the temperature.

Localization-pt2-asset11The discount rises as the temperature rises, so the best deals come with a heatwave

For instance, an ad gets activated when the temperature outside hits 15°C. For every degree above this threshold, a new discount rate pops up. So, if the temperature outside is 35°C, potential buyers get shown a product with a 20% discount.

How this is achieved: Data from the weather API is checked hourly and the visuals and discount are adapted accordingly without needing any manual intervention. A centralized sheet holds all the data and acts as the command center.

Impact: Creative ads that use the weather to spark curiosity and increase engagement.

Play #4: Story dynamic video templates for localized targeting

Databox asked 26 marketers which ad format drives more ad clicks on Facebook and almost 60% of them reported that video ads are a clear winner.

And it makes sense. Videos are far more immersive and engaging than text-only or image-based ads.

Localizing video creatives, however, is not an easy task. Imagine asking your designers and copywriters to keep tweaking the frames so the algorithm doesn’t stop showing your ad due to ad fatigue.

Using dynamic video templates instead allows you to run multiple ad variants with different copy and images across hundreds of locations in local languages.

First, 2 variants of the copy are localized for each market. Then, targeting is further narrowed down to neighborhoods which are reflected in the creative.

Localization-pt2-asset9

Sprichst du Deutsch? Based on you country, you'll see an ad in your native language

Mini Case Study: Delivery scaleup creates hyper-targeted campaigns for 8 countries across 400 individual locations

A leading delivery scaleup needed to automate all of their global user acquisition and retention campaigns except doing this manually is not only inefficient but it’s also near impossible at this scale.

Two of their biggest challenges - creative production and workflow automation - were solved with Hunch’s custom solution. A fully automated localized creative solution built on a centralized data source, automated localization, and automated campaign launches is helping them produce 5000 image and video ads, reducing launch times from 5 days to 2 hours.

Why automated ad localization is the future of ads

Localization-pt2-asset10

We talk about ad localization and creative automation in the same breath because localization as part of an omnichannel strategy for advertisers looking to win over global markets is impossible to achieve without creative automation.

Not just when it comes to creative production but creative testing as well. Creative cycling is the way forward and quite unrealistic without automation to back you up.

Jørgen Simensen, Head of Technology and Performance at Fjuz, explains:

Let’s say, you have 50 or 100 stores or locations you want to advertise. That’s too many to handle manually, so the solution would be to create one campaign, one ad set including geolocations where you want to advertise.

The problem is that every geolocation is different.

The population is different (some are small, some are medium, and some are large).

If you advertise for different stores, some of the stores also stand for a higher turnover than others.

With automated ads, you can create a distribution key based on percent, and allocate the budget based on geolocation and turnover. If you manage to do this right, you’ll get a much lower CPM, lower CPC, and better CTR.”

The proof is in the pudding. One of their clients, C-optikk saw much better results in the last two campaigns using distribution keys.

Now not all ad localization has the goal to drive more purchases. Some are about relevant messaging that drives trust. Discovery Parks, Australia’s largest network of holiday parks, has been using ad localization to deliver state-specific creatives that differ based on government restrictions.

Katie McCraith, Digital Marketing Manager at Discovery Parks, shares:

Customers expect local ads.”

That brings us back to our original hypothesis - automated ad localization is the key to winning over customers and hitting performance goals.

Brands that will win on digital are using data to drive their decisions and creatives to unlock new ways to engage with their audience.

You could be next! Hop on a free strategy consultation to find out if localization is the right move for your brand.