Internet Trends Report: Local Marketing Insights

This week marked the release of the much-anticipated annual Internet Trends Report published by Mary Meeker of KPCB. The 200+ page report covers a broad range of internet trends, and several important themes emerged that signal important shifts in local marketing.

The entire report is worth a look if you have the time (it’s embedded at the end of this blog post for easy viewing). In the meantime, here’s a snapshot of some of the highlights to keep in mind when it comes to your local marketing.

1. Voice Search is Growing Quickly & Will Impact the Local Marketing Landscape

Voice assistants are used by a majority of smartphone users in the US.

  • 65% of smartphone users used built-in voice assistants in 2015, more than double from 30% in 2014.
  • Google trends imply that queries associated with voice-related commands have risen 35X since 2008.

Consumers using voice assistants are contributing to a rapid rise in voice search.

  • As of June 2015, Siri handled over 1 billion search query requests per week via speech.
  • By May 2016, 1 in 5 searches on mobile Android apps in the US were voice searches.
  • Users actively using voice queries are doing so 6-8 times per day.

Local search is a substantial portion of voice search.

  • 22% of voice searches are explicitly for local information.
  • Meanwhile, other voice searches may be related to content or functions that local businesses provide – here’s the breakdown: 21% for fun and entertainment, 30% for general information, and 27% for personal assistant functions.
  • Users are using voice search at home (43%), in the car (35%), on the go (19%), and at work (3%).

Taken together, these trends indicate that voice search is already impacting local marketing, as it represents a significant amount of local search queries. The use cases of voice search also have interesting implications for local businesses, as they help paint the picture of the mobile consumer buying journey. For example, voice search empowers the consumer to conduct searches even from the car.

Keep an eye on the voice search trend and how this will continue to impact and empower the mobile consumer buying journey as well as how natural language and speech patterns from mobile search start to influence a local approach to SEO and content marketing.

2. Mobile Represents a Huge Opportunity in Marketing

For businesses, mobile represents a huge opportunity for marketing and often an untapped arena in which to reach consumers.

Specifically, mobile represents about 25% of consumer time spent in media, but it represents just 12% of ad spend investment overall.

3. Overall Time Spent on Social Media is Rising; Videos & Images Critical

  • Time spent by the average user on top social media sites is growing.
    • Facebook (41 minutes per day)
    • Instagram (25 minutes per day)
    • Snapchat (25 minutes per day)
    • Pinterest (21 minutes per day)
    • Twitter (21 minutes per day)
  • Image sharing growth remains strong, with over 3 billion photos shared daily across Snapchat, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and Facebook.
  • Video has become one of the hottest types of content on social media sites, with sites like Facebook and Snapchat’s latest platform insights indicating the average viewer watches 8-10 videos per day on their respective platforms.
    • Facebook – 8 per day in Q3 2015
    • Snapchat – 10 per day in Q1 2016

Social media sites still represent a huge opportunity to influence consumers, particularly from a mobile perspective. Businesses should be thinking about how to harness the opportunity to engage with consumers via these compelling visual mediums that they love to consume, create, and share.

For example, some companies have begun connecting with fans by providing branded Snapchat lenses that encourage fan content creation and engagement with the brand. Similarly, user-generated content such as Facebook Live videos offer a unique opportunity to engage with consumers, and much early innovation has been from larger brands. Now is the time for savvy local businesses to begin finding ways to authentically engage via highly-popular visual and video formats that consumers love.

What’s Your Takeaway?

Check out the full Internet Trends Report below to see more details on these insights, and feel free to share your thoughts or takeaways in a comment!

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