As this year comes to a close, you might be structuring your marketing plans for the new year. What trends should you follow? Where should you put your time, energy, and money?
It doesn’t take much research to know mobile marketing is the way to go.
- eMarketer states that 83 percent of internet users will use a mobile phone to go online at some point, and 16 percent of users will use a mobile device exclusively for internet access.
- A report from Cellit shows that SMS response rates are still 8 times higher than email marketing.
- According to an article on socPub, 57 percent of internet users say they won’t recommend a business with a poorly designed mobile web presence.
- And 82 percent of searchers will use their phone to help them make a decision about an in-store purchase.
If you’re not beefing up your mobile marketing strategy, you’ll be losing sales.
You can’t consider mobile marketing without taking a look at geofencing.
What is Geofencing?
Geofencing is a location-based technology. It uses two separate functions to make it work: global positioning system (GPS) or Radio Frequency Identification (RFID). It works by pinpointing where the user is, and connecting it with a map-based technology to identify specific regions of interest. When the user enters a certain location, it becomes possible to set up a trigger to contact the person through text messaging or email.
While the term geofencing is growing in popularity, the concept is still a bit of a mystery to most marketers. Yet for 2019, it might be the perfect addition to your mobile marketing plan, especially if you have a local audience.
One of the earliest examples came from the agricultural industry. Cows were equipped with GPS units, and technology was installed at the ranch boundaries. This gave the farmer all he needed to monitor the herd in an easy way.
Geofencing works in a similar way.
Every person with a mobile phone is equipped with GPS servicing. And because the vast majority of us no longer travel anywhere without our phones in our pockets, you have an easy way to track your potential customers’ movements.
To start, you clearly define your boundaries. You set up your geofence in latitude/longitude coordinates to define your area. Then when a potential customer enters the area and meets your qualifications, they will receive a push notification. That increases the likelihood of them connecting with you.
Sounds easy enough, right?
That’s just the start. There are many ways you can use this mobile marketing function to connect with potential customers. If you’re looking for specifics to add to next year’s plan, read on.
Enhancing the Customer Experience
The main goal of using geofencing is to connect more effectively with your customers. We live in an experience-driven world; anything you can do to enhance that will benefit your bottom line. It works especially well for building loyalty.
If a customer frequents your location, they are valuable to your business. If you can increase the number of times they visit, your profits rise. Win/win for both of you.
As a local business owner, your loyal customers are probably nearby a lot. That gives you the opportunity to get very specific with how you target them. Geofencing allows you to use the technology strategically to build on your loyalty. Try messages promoting something new to your lunch menu late morning. Want to promote an evening event? Try messages late afternoon.
However, it’s also important to note that you don’t want to overdo this technology. Too many notifications can have the opposite effect, and leave your customers scrambling to unsubscribe.
Get Creative With Holidays and Events
Did you know there’s a holiday every single day of the year?
February might have Valentine’s Day, but did you know it’s also National Cherry Month?
October 31st might be Halloween, but did you know it’s also “increase your psychic powers” day?
If you plan your mobile marketing strategy well, you can take advantage of some of these more obscure holidays and events, and use them to stir up business when your competition isn’t.
The more specific you can get, the more you can define who will receive your messages, the better your results can be.
Monitor Your Workforce
Don’t think geofencing technology is only about connecting with your customers. It’s the perfect technology for staying connected with your workforce too.
If your business has a lot of employees out and about each day, you can use geofencing to track their location. Think Uber and Lyft. By using GPS technology, you know where people are at any given moment. If you need someone to make a special delivery, or to stop by and pick something up, you can see which member of your workforce is at the best location for the job.
That means every step of the process can be better tracked and better controlled. It helps you pinpoint where problems lie, and can help increase customer satisfaction by allowing you to be more specific with information. Instead of two hour windows for delivery, you might be able to cut the time in half.
Gather Better Data
Want to learn even more about your prospects and customers? That’s possible with geofencing too.
The more you use geofencing technology, the more analytics and trends you’ll start to see. And you can use this to make your mobile marketing strategy even stronger.
How about gauging your customers’ behavior? Track how much time they spend at different locations. Or evaluate what purchases they make. Or how much time they spend doing different kinds of shopping.
This gives you all you need to alter your messages and be more specific about what you’re offering. The clearer definition you have for what your customers are thinking, the better you can target their needs.
So how is your mobile marketing strategy looking for the new year? How will geofencing play a part of that strategy?