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How HoneyBaked Ham drove 15,317 transactions via paid search

HoneyBaked Ham was able to drive 2,279 conversions during the holiday season through a series of mobile and digital campaign initiatives, an area that similar produce brands are rarely seen.

During Easter, Christmas and Thanksgiving, HoneyBaked Ham expects more than half of sales revenue to be acquired. The brand looked to take advantage of this time and up its sales through a campaign that focused on hyper-local paid search on Google and Bing in which it drove 173,318 driving direction requests from consumers.

“Users who were looking for guidance on their holiday entertaining and dinner plans were met with custom holiday content from HoneyBaked Ham, calling attention to nearby retail locations and e-commerce options,” said Joshua Allen, director of marketing at Location3. “The goal of the campaign was to easily connect the dots for users, highlighting HoneyBaked Ham as the preferred and accessible choice for the season.”

HoneyBaked Ham partnered with Location3 for the campaign.

Localization tactics
Franchise locations for HoneyBaked Ham saw 447 percent return on investment from local paid search.

Paid search initiatives were created by looking at past data on specific markets during previous holiday seasons.

The campaign targeted those looking to cook holiday meals for Thanksgiving throughout the course of November in 2016. Paid search campaigns appeared on mobile and desktop search engine results from Google and Bing.

Paid search campaigns at a national level focused on holiday content to drive those who are looking to cook for Thanksgiving to purchase.

Local campaigns relied on franchise data, which determined the budget and scale for each location based on previous sales. Location3 leveraged local targeting data such as DMA, city, county and zip code to ensure local territory compliance on a location-by-location basis.

Location3 created an algorithm for the campaign to reduce wasted ad spend, to determine which keywords in paid search were causing conversions. Those that did not were no longer invested in.

HoneyBaked Ham’s campaign also appeared on local business listings and paid media on a national level. Brand terms and messaging was the focus of national PPC and display ads to drive digital sales, as well as in-store visits.

Search importance
Customers who search for products on mobile are 57 percent more likely to visit a store and 51 percent more likely to make a purchase, suggesting that understanding mobile shopping and search behavior is more important than ever, according to Nielsen numbers cited by an ecommerce executive.

The executive, speaking at Mobile Marketer’s Mobile FirstLook conference in a talk focusing on concepts and user experience fundamentals called Using Mobile to Influence Buying Behavior, explored the different stages of mobile shopping behavior, suggesting ways in which retailers and marketers can connect with consumers at each step. Taken together, these data points mark a formulaic way to make sense of the often-chaotic shopping habits of consumers (see more).

Online retailer Greekgear also saw a 33 percent increase in its mobile conversion rate and a 10 percent mobile conversion lift for pay-per-click campaigns after refocusing its Web site for smartphone users and doubling down on mobile text and display ads on Google, including using location targeting.

Greekgear targets sorority and fraternity members with themed merchandise. With 18-to-22-year-olds – who spend a significant amount of time on their smartphones – making up the majority of its audience, the retailer has taken a multi-pronged approach to driving both awareness and sales on mobile (see more).

“The key takeaway of this study is the value of mapping real search queries to helpful paid advertising copy and content that is both personalized and localized,” Mr. Allen said. “Setting up a paid search campaign with base keywords should just be a starting point – keep mining the data you collect as the campaign runs and optimize from there for to create more relevant user experience based on search queries from actual people.

“The goal for brands should be for their paid advertising, landing pages, websites and local business listings to line up with what consumers are actually looking for — they’re raising their hand, asking for help, and the brand to offer a relevant solution will be the one to drive them to purchase,” he said.