28 Oct Beacons: the Next Real Time Marketing Trend

Beacons are small proximity, push-messaging devices that can wake up applications on a nearby smartphone. They were created to provide marketing offers as you walk past a product or retail location, providing a real-time experience for the consumer. Because they are so relevant, users see them as a service rather than “annoying” advertising.

In order to benefit from using this technology, you have to know what your customers want to hear from you that would provide value. One of the great things about beacons is the data and marketing insights they provide.

According to a Business Insider Intelligence study from last August, it is estimated that 4.5 million active beacons will be set up by 2018, with 80 percent of them in use by retailers.

Beacons use Bluetooth technology to communicate with a consumer’s smartphone, usually when they are on location or in a store or on site at an event. The real time information sent via text, email, or app alert should ideally improve the experience and drive new sales. Beacons can send ads, coupons, offers, game scores, or any customized product information.

An airport could use beacons to help consumers navigate overwhelming terminals and find the correct gate for departure, as well as alert people to delays and direct them to shopping or dining choices with the use of a coupon.

Some hotels are using beacons to give guests a welcome message upon entering the lobby, as well as exclusive hotel incentives inside the properties, like a free drink.

The biggest value to marketers is instant access to vital consumer behavior information that used to take months (remember focus groups?). How are beacons changing your sales and marketing? Share your comments below!

image courtesy of futuretravelexperience.com

Sibet B Freides