The ability to be in the right place at the right time with the right message is the ultimate goal for any marketer.
The better you understand an individual’s behaviour and interests, the more relevant and helpful communications will be.
The impact is even bigger when you combine this information with context around a customer’s location. With geotargeting tactics, marketers have a huge opportunity to connect with customers on a deeper level. This ultimately leads to a more tailored experience, which in turn makes shoppers' lives easier and encourages a purchase.
Here are some ways that geolocation can improve your interactions with customers.
1. Driving footfall to physical stores
Despite the convenience and rapid growth of online shopping, bricks-and-mortar stores still play an essential role in many customer journeys.
Eighty five percent of consumers still prefer to purchase products in store, while other shoppers like to try in store before buying online.
Marketing teams need to ensure there’s a refined strategy in place so that customers receive a joined up experience, wherever they interact.
Incorporating nearest store information on the website and in marketing emails is an effective way to drive foot traffic to physical locations.
In this email, Nectar suggests local restaurants where customers can redeem their loyalty points.
Geotargeting also works well when promoting a local store event. This avoids wasting precious digital marketing real estate for customers who are too far away from that store.
For example, a women’s fashion retailer may want to drive customers to a particular in-store women’s fashion experience at their London Oxford Street outlet. Using customer data, the brand can target those who have been interested in women’s fashion previously and who are within the influence of the store experience.
2. Recommending products that are nearby
Sharing useful details such as the opening hours and directions to a customer’s nearest store might be the more common use of location-based marketing. But geotargeting can take personalization much further by matching a product’s location with a shopper’s location and behaviour.
You can customizing email and website content to only display products available in the customer’s nearest store, based on the location at the time of browsing. By matching customer data with product data to inform product recommendations, you avoid frustrating your customers. It's disappointing to travel to a store, only to find that the product you looked at online isn't available.
Beyond retail, this filtering of offers works well to highlight to consumers flights to their browsed destination from their nearest airport or concerts and events nearby that they might want to attend based on their past bookings. Recruiters could also use this tactic to highlight jobs within a job-hunter's commuting distance.
In this example, Pavers shows a product’s in-store availability on the product detail page. But with the right technology, this kind of data can be used to fuel product recommendations on websites and in emails.
3. Targeting customers based on the influence of a certain location
A shopper’s location isn’t always clear cut. For example, a person’s nearest store might not be the one that’s easiest for them to get to – another store might be easier for them to reach due to its proximity their place of work. Marketers should take this into consideration and leverage information from offline purchases, e.g. data from the customer’s loyalty card, as well as a store’s catchment area when defining the preferred store for each shopper.
Keeping shoppers up-to-date about their favourite store isn’t the only usage scenario for using geofencing. Savvy marketers can also engage consumers within the geographical vicinity of competitors. Burger King famously took on McDonald’s using this approach, where customers within 600 feet of a McDonald’s were given the opportunity to order a Whopper for a reduced price and then received directions to their nearest Burger King to collect their meal.
much needed update pic.twitter.com/H5v092C9RE— Burger King (@BurgerKing) December 6, 2018
Understanding a customer’s context is critical for providing an experience that will resonate and drive greater response. Location is an important aspect when it comes to personalization, and thanks to recent developments in marketing tech, incorporating this data into marketing is no longer the manual process it used to be.
By combining location-based marketing with behavioural targeting, brands can deliver smarter content and offers to customers. And the more helpful a message is perceived by the customer, the more likely they are to purchase and keep coming back.
Adapted from guest post we published on Econsultancy