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Location-based marketing could still be mobile’s ultimate saviour

Once the cutting-edge tactic of the marketing world, mobile has come a long way from its early days of SMS marketing and incentivized downloads. While mobile can arguably still hold its own through interstitials, video ads, and the rise of native advertising, it’s harder for individual brands to stand out in an oversaturated mobile market.

Location-based technologies offer marketers a more relevant and personalized customer experience and can help achieve your goals that traditional mobile marketing fails to reach.

Where mobile marketing disappoints

While mobile marketing can be an effective method in some cases, it often doesn’t provide an in-depth look at user behaviors that can truly accomplish its intended objectives. Here are a few areas where mobile marketing is losing its effectiveness:

Mining mobile data

Devices capture data all around us, from what we like to what we eat to what we buy. But the challenge lies in deciphering the data and using it to inform effective marketing initiatives, which is necessary for understanding your audience and engaging them.

A natural experience

Mobile marketing falls short in creating a natural user experience. But location-based services can help mobile marketing integrate seamlessly into an audience’s daily lives. Marketers need to consider how to capitalize on data without disrupting their audience’s routines and habits, which is indicative of traditional mobile marketing.

Simplicity of technology

Making integration simple for users is essential for a successful mobile marketing campaign. As technology evolves and catches the attention of additional web developers, mobile marketing application will gain momentum and allow marketers to successfully convince audiences to adopt these technologies.

How LBS technology can revive your mobile marketing efforts

As mobile marketing slowly loses relevance, LBS integration can transform the industry and win back the hearts of consumers. To fully capitalize on this trend, consider these strategies for giving your mobile marketing the boost it needs with LBS technology.

Discover new ways to innovate

As in any industry, innovation is key for staying relevant and useful. A good example is iBeacon, Apple’s implementation of Bluetooth low-energy wireless technology to create a novel way of providing location-based information to iOS devices. The beacons themselves are tiny, inexpensive Bluetooth transmitters that communicate with iPhone apps.

For instance, if you pass a beacon in a shop, the retailer’s app could display a special alert for you. Or on a visit to a museum, the museum’s app could provide information about the closest display using distance information gathered by the beacons.

Communicate at the right time and place

Geofencing allows marketers to send messages to customers’ cell phones when they enter a defined area, such as a shopping mall. This hyper-locality means businesses can tailor offers based on local events or holidays and steer potential customers away from competitors.

Location also gives another layer of understanding when it comes to data analytics. Organizations can see whether targeted offers actually result in higher sales, track how often customers visit stores, how well certain display tactics work, etc.

Don’t underestimate the power of incentives

Apps like shopkick offer customers rewards for simply walking into a store. It’s a fairly simple model that benefits the customer through freebies and provides the company with access to hyper-local data.

Improve your user experience

In France, McDonald’s uses apps to allow customers to place orders at the nearest stores. Macy’s customers can win “points” for in-store use by scanning barcodes with the mobile app. Taco Bell hosts “happy hours” only promoted via a proximity alert. Making brand interactions simple, relevant, and beneficial for consumers is key to encouraging participation and promoting a positive brand image.

LBS technology can help marketers pinpoint user behaviors and more specifically design a campaign that engages them at the perfect touchpoints. But when it comes to new technology, there are always concerns that prevent consumers from adopting it.

Potential roadblocks that inhibit adoption

Hyper-local mobile marketing can be a game changer, but it comes with its fair share of obstacles. As a telematics service provider to Audi and the Audi connect program, we know that distracted driving is front and center of the debate over the connected vehicle. Serious UI/UX design will have to factor into how mobile marketing can integrate naturally with human behaviors such as driving.

Privacy is also a hot topic when we talk about intelligent and location-based marketing. It will be a challenge for marketers to provide enough value to their target audiences while not triggering the privacy threshold.

Lastly, continued accessibility is another obstacle within LBS technology. Application and web developers will need tools that allow quick and easy development of logical marketing tools. As the business model of location-based marketing evolves and develops a track record, the development community will increasingly take notice and focus resources to support it.

There’s no doubt that LBS technology will transform the mobile marketing industry. It’s just a matter of integrating these services early while staying cognizant of potential setbacks before reaping the benefits of the next wave of mobile marketing. How will you use location-based technology to revamp your mobile marketing efforts?

Image: Great Beyond via Flickr.

Author | John Horn

John Horn
John Horn is the president of RacoWireless, a global M2M service provider that’s revolutionizing the development of the Internet of Things every day. The company enables the most innovative solutions and makes it easy for its partners to build solutions and stay in control of them across the globe.... More

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