Location-aware mobile technology is transforming social marketing

Knowing a consumer’s location, as well as the time they’re at a specific location, can be a useful “predictor” of their intent to buy. With this in mind you can use location-based marketing to:

  • Display localised ads to a person visiting a website from a specific location
  • Deliver an offer, coupon or ‘special’ (Foursquare’s terminology) to a users mobile phone
  • Deliver detailed product information when someone is standing in front of the product
  • Offer incentives for location-based activities such as visiting a store multiple times
  • Make it easy to find nearby things such as stores, cash-points or even vending machines
  • Provide events and social opportunities based on a physical location
  • Share location-based information with others in a social network such as Facebook or Twitter

Leverage the next trend in Mobile Marketing

Time and localise your mobile marketing effectively to reach people who are actively sharing their location. Here are some tips for getting you started:

  • Specify which areas you cover. If you’re a service business that travels e.g. a plumber, you can specify on Foursquare, Facebook Places, Yelp or Google Places which areas you cover. This is also helpful for pizza/food delivery businesses.
  • Optimize your main site for mobile viewing. An easy-to–navigate mobile friendly site is a necessity, not just an option anymore. Take a look at our Mobile Solution Case Studies here.
  • Ensure your own location(s) are “check-in” worthy. Would you check-in to your own location multiple times?
  • Allow customers to opt in or out. Not everyone is going to want to disclose personal information such as their interests and their location, so give them the option.
  • Be 100% transparent. Once a customer has opted in, make sure to explain exactly how you plan to use the personal information you collect from them, easing any concerns over privacy.
  • Create Attractive deals. Reach out to the deal services such as Groupon and Living Social and ask specifically for ways to participate in their instant deals. Explore Foursquare’s ‘Specials’, they have numerous innovative options:
  • Finally, make it easy to opt out. Don’t “lock” customers into a program they decide they don’t want to be in. Just like any level of customer service, it’s all about keeping customers happy, loyal and eager to make purchases.

Smartphone owners want quick access to location-relevant information on-the-go. So-Lo-Mo (Social Location Mobile) offers powerful and innovative new ways to promote practically any product, service, or venue. Whatever your goal, role, or industry, contact a WSI eMarketing consultant to help you find new customers, strengthen brand loyalty, and increase profits.

Social Media Spotlight: Groupon

Hot on the heels of rising star Foursquare comes the latest contender eager for a share of the social media spotlight. Similar in nature to Foursquare’s promotion-driven focus on local business, Groupon refines the idea further.

The appeal of any platform that promises new ways to help local businesses connect with customers is undeniable. The success of Groupon will, as always, be decided by the fickle consumer and how quickly (or indeed whether) they adopt the platform. In this article, we’ll take a brief look at what Groupon is about, and how it could help your business to succeed.

Reaching Out To New Customers
One of Foursquare’s key selling points to business users is that it offers promotion-driven incentives for users to visit businesses in their area. Whereas Foursquare adopts a wider, socially interactive user experience similar to Facebook’s Places app, Groupon takes a purely business-centric angle. Focusing solely on offering promotions for local businesses, the website promises to ‘deliver customers to your door’ through offers fed to users via email, Facebook and Twitter.

More than a simple online promotion, the site hopes to engage users via ‘a witty, positive write-up that is seen by our tens of thousands of email subscribers and website visitors.’ The company go on to claim that ‘subscribers religiously read the entertaining descriptions of our featured businesses, delivering a promotion that is far more engaging than traditional advertising.’

How Does It Work?
Groupon offers are based on a certain number of takers for any given offer. If the required amount of customers sign up to the offer, then it becomes active. If this minimum is not reached, then the offer remains dormant however. This ‘no-win, no-fee’ basis, it appears, is designed to remove the element of risk for businesses investing in the platform’s online promotion scheme.

In addition to promising ‘huge exposure’ via featured offers, the company claim the ability to generate a significant ROI over a short period. Much of this premise appears to be based on word-of-mouth via current users, so it is somewhat difficult to quantify at this early stage.

Groupon do not require a long-term contract and adopt a ‘no-win, no-fee’ approach to billing. Whilst GO claim to ‘guarantee’ a certain amount of customers however, this is clearly negated by the fact that the promotion is free should this number not be reached.

As with any new social media innovation, the success of GO will ultimately be decided by how many users (potential customers) choose to adopt the platform. In truth, at present the website could perhaps use a little more distinction between users and businesses, but there is no doubting its potential as an extremely useful tool in any internet marketers’ arsenal.

What are your thoughts?