Retail Week recently reported that more than half of UK retailers are investing in proximity marketing campaigns.
Just what is it that has got them excited?
What Is Proximity Marketing?
Proximity marketing involves attracting customers via WiFi technology and then offering timely and relevant marketing messages when they come into range of a beacon, typically situated by a prominent product or offer.
The simple yet sophisticated technology uses advances in mobile technology to send a targeted marketing message to potential customers as they pass by, enter, or browse within a store.
All that’s needed for these new targeted 1:1 relationships to form is for the customer to carry a mobile phone with Bluetooth enabled, and for the retailer to have the required technology set up in store .
What Do The Stats Say?
According to research by Ninth Decimal it is clear that proximity marketing offers a clear benefit both to the advertiser and the consumer.
Surveys indicated that 53% of consumers were willing to let companies know their location so that they could receive advertising that was more relevant to their interests.
In addition, 57% said they were more likely to engage with proximity marketing than other forms of marketing.
Other industry reports have found that products advertised to customers in the area using proximity marketing saw an incredible 19 times more interactions than before they were advertised using the method.
How Are Brands Using Proximity Marketing?
Point of purchase marketing has come a long way since shelf barkers and plastic wobblers.
The technology behind proximity marketing is allowing retailers and brands to deliver relevant messages and offers at the time when they will have the most impact – in store.
In the US, Safeways use beacon technology to drive sales and increase brand loyalty, targeting shoppers as they enter the shop with special discounts and vouchers that encourage them to make purchases they might not otherwise had chosen.
Global brands are excited too. Kelloggs says “This [proximity marketing] is a new frontier, and it will drive much better quality interactions between the targeted consumer and an offer, which is right in front of their eyes.”
Other businesses have sent messages to customers when they enter a specific department, stand near a particular item or even as they walk by on the street. Retailers report higher conversion rates and increased customer loyalty.
3 Things Retailers Need To Get Started Now
There are three simple things that every business needs to get started using proximity marketing:
Technology: To deliver information directly to your customer’s phones you need the right technology.
Customers with smart phones: You need your customers to opt-in to receive your messages, typically by signing up to a free wifi network you offer. To kick-start customer usage you need to clearly communicate the benefits of opting in with a range of marketing methods. As a first step your staff must be trained to encourage customers to start using your wifi. Campaigns in-store and on-line can also help.
A Marketing plan: Creating the right messages and delivering them when they will be most effective, not intrusive or unwelcome, is important. With the right technology partner proximity marketing is easier to manage than you might expect, and not just for large businesses.