One of the most consequential topics to emerge in local commerce in 2019 (and our upcoming editorial focus for the month of January) is the location-based ad industry’s looming privacy winter. Due to regulations like CCPA, as well as privacy restrictions at the mobile OS level, the bar will be raised for collecting location and movement data.
That could likewise raise barriers to entry in location-intelligence and even lead to a market shakeout, considering the abundance of companies that have entered the space in the past few years. One of the longstanding players that will vie for market share is London-based Blis.
The company’s location intelligence engine currently reaches 19,000 airports, 131,800 fast-food restaurants, 751,000 shopping malls, and 1,988,900 hotels. These provide strong data sources, and the qualitative mix aligns with Blis’ strategy for offline foot traffic data.
“We can use location data to target customers or potential customers who demonstrate some form of in-market behavior or some audience attribute that makes them interesting or attractive,” Blis head of insights Alex Wright told us on the latest episode of Street Fight’s Heard on the Street podcast.
Aligned with a trend we are tracking among location intelligence players, these data sets are being used beyond marketing and media buying. Location data can also track how consumers are using products or visiting locations. That can inform a deeper set of operational and product planning strategies beyond advertising.
“Developments over the past two or three years have seen us move more in the direction of analytics,” Wright said. “So using location data to understand general behavior in order to inform business decisions away from direct media applications is an additional point of focus for us.”