BrainTrust Query: The Future of Location-Based Marketing
By Ron Stack, CEO of Zavee.com
Through a special arrangement, presented here
for discussion is a summary of a current article from the Hanifin Loyalty blog.
Location Based Marketing Summit held recently in New York blended strategic
and tactical insights about location-based marketing techniques. Most of
the speakers observed that the discipline is still in its earliest
Ian Schafer, CEO for Deep Focus, considers the smartphone to be "the
next generation loyalty card," with targeted deals and discounts being
available upon check-in (or perhaps even without a digital check-in). By way
of example, he highlighted ShopKick, which has a hardware platform that pushes
reward currency to the consumer as soon as they enter the merchant’s
store (without the consumer even having to check-in or make a purchase).
it was agreed that location-based applications can at least provide:
- People – other users who might have something in common with
- Content – messages or offers based on what the user likes
that is at/near her location;
- Time and Place – targeted, timely messages or offers based
on where the user is right now;
- Context – communications based on prior behavior, as tracked
by the location-based device.
The potential of location-based data is that it can drive better business
decisions by adding additional dimensions (i.e., time and place) to what is
otherwise known about each consumer’s behavior. One great example cited was
the Microsoft Bing ‘Home Turf Finder’ for the World Cup, which identified certain
bars in New York City as "home turf" for fans of a particular team. The determinations
were based in part on editorial sources such as Thrillist, but were
mostly derived from ‘heat maps’ of consumers who had checked in or tweeted
their support as well as their location.
speakers also noted Google’s recent announcement that 30 percent
of mobile searches and 20 percent of all internet searches have local intent,
and said that all of the major players (e.g., Facebook, Google, and even wireless
carriers) were already focusing on local information.
There was also considerable
discussion of Groupon, although some panelists expressed doubts that the "deep
discount, deal of the day" model
provides sustainable customer growth. Speakers agreed, however, that geo-targeting
adds value by increasing both relevance and personalization.
agreed that there is great demand for marketers to engage with consumers at "the
right place and the right time, all the time." Mobile
couponing, despite being a fragmented space, seems to have taken hold. As a
result, one area in which technological developments are anticipated is indoor
navigation, where GPS signals are sometimes degraded and are not designed to
be accurate enough for navigation within a store.
Finally, the issue of consumer
privacy arose in almost every session. John Nicholson of law firm Pillsbury
Winthrop Shaw Pittman concluded that "the
more value a marketer delivers, the more information a consumer is likely to
and that an application that seems to exist only for marketing purposes is
unlikely to gain the consumer’s trust.
Discussion Questions: What does the future hold for location-based marketing?
What are the potential benefits for brands in understanding consumers’ local