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    What She Said.

Let's get social about Rural American Shoppers

April 05, 2018
Author: Katie Gantt

There's a huge misconception out there that rural consumers are disconnected from the world and don't scroll the Internet for funny cat memes or shop online. Guess what, they do! While Rural Americans don't have as much access to the Internet as their urban neighbors, they still use it just the same. They actually spend about 6 hours a day online- MORE than Urban Americans. 

Let's breakdown some facts: 

  • Rural consumers represent 15% of all internet-driven transactions 
  • 45% of rural residents go online weekly to make a purchase 
  • 58% of Americans in rural areas have shopped on marketplaces, 71% at large retailer sites, 39% on web stores or independent boutiques, and 40% at category-specific online stores

Clearly, they're online. But what are they doing? Social media, shopping, finding new products & coupon hunting. 

Social Media Usage 

58% of rural residents use social networks, their favorites are Facebook & YouTube. Facebook is one they use to connect and engage with friends and share things, while most time spent on YouTube is learning and how-to videos. (Remember, they're a hands-on group who do things themselves!) Rural consumers utilize social media to not only to stay-up-to-date with their friends, but also stay engaged with their favorite brands through: product updates, special promotions, customer service & brand news. It is essential that when marketing to the rural demographic that you don't dismiss social media marketing. Whether that is a companion campaign to run alongside print or OOH placement, or just social media strategy- it's a must to any marketing mix. In fact, 25% of rural consumers are more likely to buy something after seeing an ad on social media. (Hint, hint, give us a call 888-506-6055!)

Paid Search & Display Advertising

Social media is a great way to connect with rural consumers and grow brand awareness. But they can't find your business without an effective paid search or display campaign! It makes it easy for rural consumers to find your brand online or in-store. 47% of rural consumers find new products through online search. Rural shoppers are more inclined to go and shop in-store, but they do their research online before they go. Ensuring your brand is easily accessible through social media and paid search is key for brand discovery with rural shoppers. 

Affiliate Program 

Everyone. Loves. A. Coupon. Just some quick facts, 40% of rural consumers will go out of their way to get a deal, and 33% use coupons when they shop. So make sure you have a great affiliate program with the top coupon sites that not only align with your brand, but also are visible by your target customer. We know which coupon sites rural consumers shop on, and how to make your marketing message stand out in a sea of savings. 71% of all Americans' purchasing behaviors are ifnluenced by their ability to find a coupon or discount online. 

None of these fancy stats or numbers are ones to ignore. The Rural American is key to moving your bottom line and at TSW Rural, we're here to help make that happen. We've got the resources, expertise and experience to reach the highly-desirable rural market.

Drop us a note, or give us a call, we'd love to hear from you! 

Phone: (888) 506-6055

Email: contact@tswrural.com