Beacons Show the Way To Increased Loyalty
Beacons let retailers them to collect data that can be analyzed and put to work in the form of personalized content that resonates with customers. The end goal? To encourage not only purchasing, but also store loyalty. A recent partnership between an advertising firm and a mobile technology company illustrates that increaing interest in using beacons to enhance the storefront and shopper relationship.
Freckle IoT, an ad tech company, has announced its partnership with Blue Bite, the Mobile Standard in Out-of-Home, which implements mobile technology for the retail industry. The relationship will aid in the deployment of 60,000 beacons nationwide. Connecting Freckle IoT’s open beacon ecosystem to Blue Bite’s location partnerships and mTAG platform helps advertisers launch innovative, integrated marketing campaigns that connect with consumers across digital, mobile and Out-of-Home environments with scale.
Retailers are leaders among industries adopting beacons, as they use them to provide customers with product information, flash sales or deals, and to speed up the checkout process with contactless payment systems. Geo-location lets retailers send relevant information — such as discounts, special events and other promotions — directly to shoppers. That’s an effective means of competing against e-commerce outlets, which gather information every time someone visits the page, regardless of whether they purchase.
Beacons do require buy-in from the customer; customers must enable bluetooth and accept location services on their mobile devices, and opt-in to the retailer’s marketing program to receive in-store notifications. Those layers help to reduce customers’ concerns that their privacy is being invaded. User consent provides the foundation of all push-notification programs. And some applications don’t need specific information. For example, Apple, creator of iBeacons, has rolled out the technology in all of its U.S. stores, but doesn’t collect any specific user information about shoppers. For now, the company is simply using the sensors to show customers how beacon technology works.
Currently, less than 1% of the 3.5 million retail stores in the United States have rolled out beacon technology, according to Umbel, a business analytics company. That number is rapidly growing however, with household names including Macy’s, Lord & Taylor, Starwood Hotels, McDonald’s and Major League Baseball rolling out solutions.
The Freckle IoT partnership makes use of Blue Bite’s expertise in the area of Out-of-Home mobile activations and takes advantage of the company’s extensive roster of location partners. Freckle IoT’s open beacon network connects the company’s rising number of application partners with its beacon ecosystem, addressing the challenge of scalability in proximity deployments.
As more retailers employ beacons, shoppers will find them in more unusual places — including transit, street furniture, airports, college campuses, movie theaters, bars and taxis — working to provide rich content through mobile or wearable devices and target in-app advertising on a hyper-local level. Brands can deliver innovative, contextually relevant messaging to engaged and interested consumers who want to be connected and be a part of an enhanced shopping experience.
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