How to Use Location-Based Marketing to Grow Your Business by Matt Bodnar - HTML preview
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Learn How To Use Cutting Edge Social Media StrategiesThis special report will give you a top to bottom rundown of the world of the hottest new mobile and social media marketing strategy "Location Based Marketing" also known as "LBM" and help you understand how you can use this to help your business succeed and why you need to start using location based marketing today. This special report will feature a breakdown of all the major topics involved in location based marketing today. The report will definite location based marketing, show you all the benefits it offers for you and your business, and show how you to use it to crush your competition. This limited edition PDF report also features 2 free chapters from the definitive guide to location based marketing available today. Are you ready to unleash the power of location based marketing, grow your sales, create deep relationships with your customers, and hammer your competition? Everything you need to know about location based marketing is available in this free report.What is Location Based Marketing?
What is location based marketing? Just another social media buzz word or something that has the potential to change the way businesses interact with their consumers? Here is a working definition of location based marketing that I’ve created, to help people understand and get more clarity about exactly what location based marketing is.Location Based Marketing: A social media marketing strategy focusing on
location-based mobile check-in services, like foursquare or Gowalla, to
bring deals, promotions, coupons, discounts, or specials to customers in
real time on their mobile devices. At its core location based marketing stands at the intersection of social media marketing and mobile marketing. Also known as “LBM” – location based marketing is creating a way for businesses to literally bring value to the palm of their customers hand. Customers can “check-in” to at a store on their mobile device to unlock specials and deals. This takes the often mushy concept of “social media” and creates a way for businesses to quantify exactly how their social media presence is generating revenue. This is exactly why Location Based Marketing has so much potential and has generated so much buzz lately on major social media sites – it is finally a way for brick and mortar businesses to generate concrete revenue with social media.How Location Based Marketing Is Revolutionizing Social Media Location based marketing is the hottest new trend in online advertising and social media marketing. Location based marketing takes advantage of GPS enabled “location based services” or LBS such as Foursquare, Gowalla, Facebook Deals, and SCVNGR in order to allow customers to access coupons, deals, and specials in real time on their mobile devices. Location based marketing is changing the way that businesses both big and small are engaging their customer base. Also known as geomarketing or proximity marketing – location based marketing let’s small businesses reach their customers in real time using social media. Small businesses have often wondered – how does social media really help my business? It is very difficult to quantify exactly what benefit social media marketing has on your bottom line. It’s great to have twitter followers or fans on Facebook, but until you can monetize that revenue stream – there is no tangible impact. Location based marketing turns these soft social media platforms into concrete social distribution platforms that can be used to directly increase your sales.“Brick & Mortar” Social Media Marketing Location based marketing takes social media from a mushy internet marketing tool to something I like to call a "brick & mortar" social media tool. What do I mean by Brick & Mortar social media marketing? I think that the next step for social media marketing and location based marketing specifically is for more mainstream adoption by more traditional brick and mortar or mom and pop type businesses. Social media is currently the playing field for big national brands and tech startups – but a space largely ignored by smaller businesses. Small businesses in the restaurant and retail industry specifically will be the next people to start really getting involved more actively in social media marketing. The key to this transition is location based marketing. Why? Because location based marketing is a way for those businesses who may have previously had no interest in social media, twitter follows, or facebook (as an aside – I think every small business that faces consumers should have a facebook page) can now use location based services to drive customers physically into their store and to track those visits with check-ins. This is a very compelling value proposition for small restaurant and retail locations – one that I think smart business owners will be jumping on sooner rather than later7 Reasons Your Small Business Needs Location Based Marketing Location based marketing is an immensely powerful tool for small business marketing. Here are 7 reasons why every small business should implement an LBM campaign. 1. Customer acquisition location based marketing helps you reach out to new customers. You can offer deals or rewards for first time check-ins to encourage new visitors to your store. These customers can find your deals either by using location based services like foursquare, or by finding online deal listing like Gowalla city pages. 2. Reward loyal customers – location based marketing lets you reward your most loyal customers. You can choose to use mayor specials to reward your top customers with special goodies, or you can use repeat check-ins to reward customers with something similar to the Smoothie King punch card. 3. Monetize your social media presence – what are you going to do with all those fans on your restaurant’s facebook page? Location based marketing lets you drive those customers into your store by offering them specials or promotions – and its measurable because you can track check-ins and monitor all your lbm analytics. 4. Low Risk / High Reward – there is little to risk for setting up an LBM campaign, spending 15 minutes to set up foursquare and get your campaign going is your only real cost (other than the promotional items). So what if no one checks in for a few days? Even 1 or 2 sales extra sales would still make 15 minutes a worthwhile investment. 5. Free to use – foursquare and Gowalla are both free to use for small businesses – there is no cost to set up your campaign. Do I really need to say more? 6. Differentiate yourself from your competitors – be the first of your competitors to get ahead of the trend. If you dominate the location based marketing space before anyone else then you will be the go-to spot and your brand will be associated with location based promotions in your customer’s mind. 7. Proven marketing methods at the end of the day, none of these tactics are new or untested. Location based marketing takes the proven and successful tactics of coupons, customers loyalty cards, promotions, and discounts and moves them all onto a mobile platform in the social media space. What are you waiting for? Go set up your location based marketing campaign today. There isn’t much to lose but it could really help your business grow sales and outmaneuver the competition.How Location Based Marketing Can Help Your Business Survive The Recession The economy has been tough on small businesses across the board and in the last few years, only businesses that have been able to stay lean and keep their customers have survived. Think about the fast casual restaurant segment – it has survived andeven grown during the recession by creating value for customers and has a smaller more nimble business model than traditional casual dining. Location based marketing is an excellent customer acquisition tool that can help your business survive these tough economic times. There are a few key ways that location based marketing can let you thrive even in a down economy. With the economy in the dumps, customers are hunting for bargains and looking for ways to save money. Location based marketing deals are an excellent way to offer your customers real value. By giving your customers relevant deals and discounts, location based marketing lets you turn economic downturns into an opportunity to acquire customers. You can also use location based marketing as a way to differentiate your brand during a tough economy. While your competitors are losing customers by the day, you can use LBM strategies to build customer loyalty and reward your customers. In tough economic times – keeping your core customers is an essential part of surviving. Location based marketing is the tool for rewarding loyal customers and keeping them in the store. The lifetime value of loyal customers, especially in a recession, is what keeps many businesses afloat. Location based marketing campaigns are also free to launch and cost very little to run, making them a great tool to deploy for businesses that are looking for cost effective ways to grow their customer base during a recession.The Future of Location Based Marketing – What Drives User Adoption? There is an interesting piece over at Wired about the future of locationbased marketing: The Future of Geo-Location: Faith, or Science? This article points out some of the doubts people have about the future of location based marketing and the number of users currently on the major LBM platforms. The article does a great job of addressing the two major concerns people have about user adoption of location based services. The first major concern about location based services is that users will be too lazy to check in. Checking-in is an action, something active. People have to pull out their mobile devices and actually click the check-in box. Unlike watching TV which is entirely passive, checking-in requires an extra step. This is often cited as a major stepping stone to mass adoption of location based services and a reason why location based marketing can’t scale effectively. However, the entire app universe is built around the fact that people enjoy using their mobile phones for all sorts of activities from texting, to google maps, Zagat, etc – people use their mobile phones as a portal to access information and take action – and location based services stand at the nexus of this. The Wired article also points out that activities like web browsing and even something like video games are very active behaviors and yet those are still things people spend tons of time doing both on their computers and on their mobile devices. People also already take time out of their day to clip coupons, use punch cards, and take advantage of similar discounts or promotions – location based marketing simply makes it even easier for people to access these deals in the palms of their hand. The second big concern about location based marketing is that users will fear a loss of privacy when announcing their location to their friends and other users on their location based service. This is the major reason cited for the small number of users on location based services right now and the fears people have about growth in the industry. The article makes an excellent point that starting with Facebook and now many other services like Twitter or even Gmail – people are willing to give up their private information as long as they perceive that they get value out of that exchange. The key is to offer the customer something in exchange – show them that giving up their location is worth the value of finding relevant and interesting deals or specials in their area.“People are also willing to give up lots of private information, or are
indifferent about it — witness the success of Facebook. So I don’t
think that’s going to be the big friction either.
I think location-based services that are integrated with other things
of value are the ones that will hugely resonate. So, you use Google
for lots of things and now Google tells you what’s around you
wherever you are.
You don’t have to do anything but launch a browser, which you do
1,345 times a day.
Facebook entices you to run their app in the background all the
time — why not? Smartphone manufacturers even sell their phones
now as social network delivery systems — and then say when you
connect with your friends (which you’ll do anyway) you can see where they are and, by the way, here’s a store with stuff on sale
which Facebook knows you like.
It will become natural and expected to be informed, personally,
about proximate things of interest.” Wired does a great job of pointing out what I also think about the location based services market – as with other social media – location based marketing will become part of people’s daily experiences and something that is natural and expected – people want relevant, timely, and interesting information – and location based marketing can deliver it to them.The Real Potential of Location Based Marketing The key to unleashing the real potential of the location based services market, turning location based marketing into an essential marketing tool for small business, and growing the location based services user base is for the major location based services to re-conceive what business they are in and understand the true potential for location based marketing. While things like badges and special rewards for exploring cities are interesting distractions – the meat of location based services is in the value they can offer consumers. To drive users onto Foursquare and Gowalla – they need to realize that nifty gadgets and cool features are not the end game. Give people value. Give them a reason to log in and check-in at their local coffee shop. It’s all well and good to be the mayor, but at the end of the day, as a consumer, I want that extra dollar in my pocket. I want that free order of French fries. Promotional marketing and coupon marketing have been highly successful marketing and sales tactics for a long time. These are tried and true marketing methods and ways to generate sales and build customer loyalty. Foursquare and Gowalla need to realize they are in the location based marketing business – they are in the business of location based coupons, location based promotions, and mobile marketing.They don’t need to be focusing development on a cute and fun user
interface – the way to get real traction and bring customers onto their
platforms is to show customers that there is real value in using these
platforms. Facebook Deals coming to market shows that there are big players in the market who understand the underlying dynamics. Facebook doesn’t bother with badges or other such functionality - Facebook Deals is designed specifically to leverage Facebook’s user base and deliver relevant content and value to them. That is the future model of location based marketing and the other players in the market such as Foursquare, Gowalla, and SCVNGR need to refocus on demonstrating the value of location based services to consumers.Seven Applications Every Location Based Marketer Needs Location based marketing is taking social media and transforming it from a mushy concept to a real tool to drive revenue in your small business. In order to take advantage of the huge opportunities location based marketing provides, There are a few key apps that every small business interested in location based marketing should keep in their marketing repertoire. While it is not necessary to use all of these apps, each one is helpful in its own right and can help strengthen your LBM campaign in one way or another. Here is a quick rundown of the basic apps that you need to know (and use) to be successful with location based marketing. 1. Foursquare – This is a no brainer. Foursquare is the market leader in location based services and one of the big names of LBM. Foursquare is free to use and set up for your business. Foursquare also has the largest established user base of any mainstream location based service. 2. Gowalla – Another strong contender in the LBM space, Gowalla also has a substantial user base and offers a “city pages” where you can feature specials and deals for customers to browse online, a great way to showcase your offers to new and perspective customers. 3. Facebook Facebook is involved directly in the LBM space with Facebook Places, which allows you to set up a a location page for your business. Facebook Deals is a new Facebook platform that lets you offer specials and reward programs to customers. Facebook’s Fanpage is also a great way to keep your fans updated about your latest specials. 4. SCVNGR – SCVNGR is a smaller location based service that is up and coming. With the help of some recent VC invesments and a big deal with coca-cola, SCVNGR has definitely put itself on the map. Given the lack of users, its hard to get as much traction, but keep an eye on this service. 5. Geotoko - Geotoko is a third party LBM platform that allows you to monitor your location based marketing campaign across multiple locations and platforms. With an easy to use and sleek interface, Geotoko is a great way to manage your LBM campaign in one place. This service does cost money so keep that in mind. 6. Place Punch – Place Punch is similar to Geotoko and offers another platform to monitor your LBM campaign from one place – the software isn’t quite as sleek but its a little cheaper than Geotoko. Both services offer a free trail so give them a shot. 7. Twitter - Twitter doesn’t have a specific location based component that lets you offer deals to customers, but its such a powerful platform for customer engagement and PR that it needs to be integrated into any successful LBM campaign. You can use twitter to broadcast your LBM campaigns to customers and generate buzz about your latest check-in special.How To Use Twitter For Location Based MarketingTwitter is a very strong platform for location based marketing – while it doesn’t fit into the category of traditional location based marketing services like Foursquare or Gowalla – Twitter can be a vital tool and take your LBM campaign to the next level. Twitter can be used to create a follower list of customers who are passionate about your brand and your business. This Twitter follower list can be used as a “permission asset” of customers who want to see what specials and deals you are offering. Once you build up a significant twitter following you can market to those customers using Twitter. What can you do with Twitter to juice up your LBM campaign and make some sales? Here are a few suggestions to consider for building your Twitter base and using that to leverage your LBM campaign.· Tweet about one-time specials and deals available through other
location based platforms – send out a tweet to your followers and let them know to come check-in and unlock your special.· Use Twitter to get new followers onto your LBM platform – get followers to sign up for Foursquare or Gowalla and come in to your store for specials, discounts and deals, once they are on the platform – you can offer them more specials in the future.· Offer check-in specials exclusively for your Twitter followers – this is a great way to reward your twitter followers and encourage more of your customers to join twitter – this creates a virtuous cycle where you get more followers on both twitter and your location based service of choice.· Give your customers a small bonus for becoming a follower on Twitter – 10% off or a free beer will do – something simple but meaningful- this creates a win-win situation for both you and your customer because you are both providing each other with something of value. · Advertise in your store let customers know if they follow you on twitter they can get access to free deals and specials that you will only post on Twitter – this creates a great incentive to get your customers on the platform, once you start offering them specials and deals then you can drive concrete and measureable foot traffic into your venue using location based services like Foursquare. Use Twitter as part of your arsenal and you can unlock the real strength of your LBM campaign. What are you waiting for? If you already have Twitter followers, this is even easier as you can start to monetize your follower base and use your followers to drive foot traffic and ultimately sales into your business.The Key To Restaurant Marketing – Where Do Location Based Services Fit?Great graphic from the National Restaurant News article on Restaurant Trends in 2011. 43.4% of the restaurants owners surveyed by the National Restaurant News said Social Media Marketing was their top marketing priority. Another 31% said in-store promotions were their top marketing priority. Location based marketing stands at the intersection of both of social media and in-store promotions. This means that location based marketing dovetails perfectly with 74.4% of restaurant’s marketing strategies! Location based marketing lets restaurants tap their social media presence to drive concrete customer foot traffic into their store. It also ties in with in-store promotions because customers physically need to check-in, and they can access all sorts of in-store promotions like discounts, coupons, free giveaways, or group deals.The Next Level of “Location” – Digital Wallets The next level of location based services could completely uproot how businesses make sales to their customers in the future. While you won’t hear many people talking about them yet – largely because there are a lot of consumer behavioral patterns and security issues that still need to get resolved (and I think they definitely will) – DigitalWallets are the ultimate direction in which the mobile market is heading. The ability to pay wirelessly and without a wallet is a huge convenience for people. On top of that, this type of technology could have a big impact for location based services, similar to something like shopkick where you check-in automatically. The Wall Street Journal describes a digital wallet as :"Meanwhile, wireless carriers are looking to turn phones into digital
wallets. AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile USA formed a joint venture with
Discover Financial Services in November that will someday let
consumers wave their phones in front of a scanner to pay for
Coming next: Purchasing on mobile phones takes off. It can be
clunky, but shoppers will get used to it as smartphone penetration
increases. IE Market Research estimates cellphone purchases in the
U.S. will jump from $1.61 billion in 2009 to $6.74 billion in 2011." The rise of digital wallets has two big impacts for location based marketing. 1. Check-ins a digital wallet solves the problem of consumers having to physically check-in, which is often sited as one of the barriers to more adoption of location based services. 2. Social Point of Sale – I talked about this in an earlier post, but the social point of sale would benefit dramatically from a digital wallet. Customers can automatically sync in when they walk into a store, unlocking all the benefits of a social point of sale and being able to pay seamlessly. This may seem far fetched but I think that we are moving towards mobile integration like this with our location based services at the forefront. This creates a compelling value proposition for both customers and businesses at the end of the day.Taking Location Based Marketing To The Next Level – Social Point of SaleThere is a great article on mashable about a concept of a “social point of sale” – a new way to link location based marketing platforms directly with a store’s Point of Sale (POS) software. This has the potential to unlock a new layer of location based services and bring location based marketing to the next level. Similar to the concept that Mark Zuckerberg had of adding a “social layer” to every app or piece of software – this could take location based marketing apps like Foursquare or Facebook Deals from tools for building sales to a revolutionary new way of selling products. Zachary Cohen explains this perfectly:“If the restaurant was aware of my physical presence there, in real
time, the host would be able to see when I last visited, what I
ordered, and how much I spent. Did I tweet about it? Did I enjoy a
particular wine? Was the roast chicken undercooked?
Armed with this information, the restaurant could develop strategies
to make my current experience even greater and turn an
occasional customer into a loyal one — perhaps even a brand
They can discount me, up-sell me or offer me a value-add, but it will
be so targeted, so relevant and so personal that I’ll hardly be able
to refuse. Of course, it will take some time to establish what is
appropriate and what isn’t, but this opens up a whole new world for
strategists to discuss, test and develop into winning tactics.” The opportunity to do this could redefine branding and marketing as we know it – location based marketing and social distribution would merge into a new customer experience that is completely customized – as soon as the customer checks in with their location based service they access their personal preferences with the store, restaurant, or brand – and the brand can use that information to deliver real value to their customers. There are some very, very exciting opportunities with location based marketing – and this is only the beginning.