5 Geofencing Tools for Customer Acquisition

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Marketers increasingly are using geofencing and proximity marketing to send push notifications to existing customers located at specific events or landmarks like trade shows, sports arenas, and parades. However, this technology still isn’t being used to its full potential as a new customer acquisition tool. In a 2015 Street Fight Insights survey of industry movers and shakers, just 23 percent named geofencing as a “top budget investment.” As marketers continue to gain a better understanding of how they can effectively use geofencing for customer acquisition, that figure is expected to grow.

In order to take full advantage of geofencing technology, marketers should focus on encouraging consumers to take specific actions at the exact moments when they’re being targeted. A classic example would be a vendor inside a music festival that sends 20 percent-off coupons to nearby mobile users during the final hour of the event. This type of hyper-relevance is especially valuable when it comes to geofencing and proximity marketing.

Here are five examples of platforms that marketers can use to deliver offers to nearby mobile users, with the ultimate goal of promoting new customer acquisition.

1. xAd: Share messages based on the places people visit.
xAd sees geofencing as the antidote to assumptive marketing. Using the company’s platform, marketers can identify and influence consumers based on their geographic locations. xAd receives location data from ad requests via mobile apps and ranks data signals for location-verified mobile inventory. It then auto-generates geo-boundaries around points of interest or key places (like a parking garage, a store, or a city block). The result is a proximity targeting solution that marketers can use to remind consumers about purchases they need to make — like remembering coffee before leaving the grocery store parking lot — or influence impulse purchases. xAd’s proximity targeting platform also can be used to amplify other advertising methods.

2. Koupon Media: Deliver offers based on shopper locations.
By combining location targeting with audience segmentation, Koupon is able to deliver highly targeted offers to shoppers. The company’s mobile coupon network delivers promotions to mobile users when they are in-store. Retailers have the option to create geofences around their store locations, use geotargeting to learn the patterns of shoppers and target offers based on audience routines, or install beacons to deliver real-time offers while consumers are shopping in-store. Conditional offers, which are based on a shopper’s offer viewing or redemption history, also can be useful when retailers are looking to exclusively interact with first-time shoppers at their stores.

3. NinthDecimal: Gain a better understanding of people’s digital and physical lives.
NinthDecimal is a precise audience intelligence platform that helps marketers gain a better understanding of consumers’ digital and physical lives. The company has an SMB/franchise platform that includes a customizable mobile website and a geofence to serve ads to consumers. Its Compass Location solution also provides a way for brands to target consumers near their own stores or competitor locations with rich media ads. NinthDecimal says its platform can be used to drive local leads through phone calls, appointment requests, and couponing. Walking and driving directions also allow retailers to give mobile users directions to their nearest locations in real time. (For more on NinthDecimal, read the Street Fight interview with president David Staas.)

4. LocationSmart: Interact with the most relevant mobile users.
Since merging with Locaid, LocationSmart has expanded its mobility platform with tools for cloud-based location services. Marketers are able to determine the location of mobile users, interact with the most relevant users or devices, and enable data for analytics. LocationSmart’s proximity-based marketing promotions, which include geofencing, event triggers, and messaging, can be used to trigger in-store purchases and encourage consumers to take actions locally. LocationSmart pulls its location data from carrier networks and devices. When they send the right offers to consumers in the right locations, at the right times, merchants who use LocationSmart should be able to increase traffic during non-peak buying hours.

5. NextBee: Automate the delivery of compelling offers.
Targeted rewards based on a mobile user’s location can be an effective way to lure in people shopping at stores nearby. NextBee has automated this process, with tools for sending targeted messages and rewards based on a consumer’s location. Using its own PACE methodology, NextBee automatically registers a marketer’s social media followers, subscribers, and existing customers. When those registered consumers visit a geofenced location, they’re rewarded with sharable mobile coupons and other targeted notifications. Businesses can also test multiple ideas at multiple store locations, and personalize the messages they send out based on user profiles.

Know of other platforms that marketers can use for geofencing? Leave a description in the comments.

Stephanie Miles is a senior editor at Street Fight.

Stephanie Miles is a journalist who covers personal finance, technology, and real estate. As Street Fight’s senior editor, she is particularly interested in how local merchants and national brands are utilizing hyperlocal technology to reach consumers. She has written for FHM, the Daily News, Working World, Gawker, Cityfile, and Recessionwire.