Placed Launches Platform to Measure Offline Consumer Behavior

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Location analytics provider Placed has unveiled a new platform to measure offline consumer behavior, offering marketers and publishers the ability to measure the physical businesses their customers visit.

With Placed Panels, which relies on opt-in consumer participants, marketers need only to create their own unique panel through Placed’s website and recruit consumer panelists. Placed Panels then uses the free, co-branded Panels application, available for iOS and Android, to persistently track customer location. Marketers, of course, are afforded access to frequently updated analytics.

“If your company is not leveraging location analytics, you are at a competitive disadvantage to peers in your industry,” said Placed founder and CEO David Shim in a press release. “Placed Panels enables companies to measure the places their customers go in the real world.”

For consumers, participation is entirely voluntary, requiring triple opt-in — on the panel recruitment page, prior to the app’s download and in the app’s first dialogue screen — and allowing easy opt-out via simply uninstalling the app.

For marketers, Panels offers media buyers unprecedented context in purchasing decisions. A media company can leverage a trove of location data — i.e., that its customers, say, are twice as likely to eat at McDonald’s than Burger King — in its dealings with marketers. Meanwhile, advertisers can presumably construct more informed campaigns.

To showcase the platform, Placed created a pilot program in August to track offline business visits by approximately 36,000 opt-in panelists in 10 top markets.

Some key takeaways included:

  1. McDonald’s and Walmart were the only businesses to crack the top 10 in all markets.
  2. Excluding McDonald’s, only five other fast-food eateries ranked in more than one market: Subway (7), Jack In The Box (3), Whataburger (2), Sonic (2) and Wendy’s (2).
  3. Starbucks (9) appeared in the top 10 more than twice as many times as Dunkin’ Donuts (4), but in the markets where both businesses were listed, Dunkin’ Donuts outranked Starbucks 75% of the time.

Beyond the dataset, Placed Panels comes on the heels of Placed Analytics‘ launch in mid-June, which contextualized where, again in the physical world, users consumed one’s content. Once marketers and publishers obtained this data, Shim said in a follow-up email, the next question was: can we consistently track consumer location, even if outside of content consumption?

“Placed Panels,” Shim says, “was the answer to that question.”

Patrick Duprey is an editorial assistant at Street Fight.