October 14, 2015

Putting Beacons in Perspective

Beacons are a hot topic in the industry lately; in fact, more than half of the top 100 retailers in the United States are testing them. In my latest Search Engine Watch byline, I stress that enterprises with multiple locations should make sure beacons support a customer-centric, location-based marketing strategy.

Beacons are low-powered devices equipped with Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). So long as a consumer possesses a Bluetooth-enabled smartphone capable of picking up BLE signals, businesses can use beacons to deliver location-based content to people when they are close (or, more likely) inside a store. Beacons appeal to businesses because the devices make it easier for the store to share contextual content such as offers about special sales and deals delivered to shoppers’ smartphones while shoppers are in or near a location.

In Search Engine Watch, I discuss how I believe that enterprises with multiple locations should put their customers first before implementing beacons across their locations. I believe that enterprises can deploy beacons most successfully by supporting mobile wallet offers that trigger “next moments.” The next moment is the action that occurs after someone has found your brand through a location-based search, usually on a mobile device. For instance, on its location landing page, a retailer might feature an offer for 20-percent off one item, and the offer can be downloaded to a consumer’s mobile wallet.


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As I mention in the column, technology must follow strategy, not the other way around. With beacons, your strategy must begin with customer-centric, location-based marketing.  Has your company tried a mobile wallet offer, or something similar? Contact  me; I would love to connect.

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