In Europe, as in the United States, retail, marketing, and technology media have been increasingly reporting on the transformational potential for proximity marketing. This emerging technology is being widely hailed as a game changer for retailers, who have struggled with losing ground to e-tailers. Proximity marketing allows retailers to at last deliver their own powerful content to in-store shoppers’ mobile devices, delivering special offers, store mapping and links to buying guides, user reviews, and more, based on an individual user’s precise in-store location. While proximity marketing is sometimes referred to generically as iBeacon™, Apple’s Bluetooth Low-Energy (BLE) standard, iBeacons™ alone have narrow applications and must be complemented by additional systems such as a robust content management system to target and control messaging.
The Netherlands has seen a few small deployments of proximity marketing, including the Groninger Museum. However, a major deployment of beacons is now underway across The Netherlands as a partnership between Dutch start-up Spaarspot and Sonic Notify, the US-based leader in proximity marketing. Spaarspot is the first mobile application in The Netherlands to reward consumers with points for using their smartphones in-store. These points can be exchanged for giftcards and other gifts. The Spaarspot application will soon be available in the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store.
The initial deployment involves 5,000 beacons in large and medium-sized retail chain stores and the shops of small retailers. Marlon E. van der Meer, CEO of Spaarspot, says, “Retailers want more visitors in their stores, more sales, and larger baskets. Spaarspot is building on the initial successes of beacon-enabled proximity aware applications in store and is providing a compelling experience for users and retailers.“ Spaarspot is dramatically expanding the reach of its rewards-based program by using audio verification in addition to BLE beacons (including iBeacons™). This unique approach will support communication with consumers while at home or otherwise out of store. While more beacon providers emerge every day, only Sonic Notify can use audio verification, in conjunction with BLE (full support for iBeacon™ and Android BLE), to recognize and establish communication with in-store shoppers, or over broadcast spectrums. Further, Sonic Notify’s core Content Management System (CMS) functions essentially as a precisely tailored digital ad server for proximity aware uses, ensuring all messaging is relevant to each individual user. “If users don’t find mobile content useful, proximity marketing won’t be successful. Relevant content means consumers, retailers, and brand advertisers all win,” says Sonic Notify CEO Aaron Mittman. L’Oréal, Sony, Levi’s, Pampers, Oreo In addition to retailers and shop-owners, consumer brands are also very interested in Spaarspot. Van der Meer notes, “Spaarspot doesn’t only create more sales and brand awareness for retailers, but can do the same for consumer brands. That’s because consumers can also earn points by viewing products in the application itself or by scanning the barcode of a product inside a store.” Big brands like L’ Oréal, Sony, Levi’s, Pampers, and Oreo are already participating in proximity marketing in markets across the world.
ABOUT SPAARSPOT: Spaarspot is the first mobile loyalty program to reward people while they shop or watch TV anywhere in The Netherlands. Consumers can earn points via their smartphones by visiting physical stores, scanning products, watching TV, or listening to radio. Spaarspot audio verification technology makes it possible to recognize savers and award points. Their proprietary technology guarantees user privacy. Spaarspot users can exchange their accumulated points for gift cards, theater or concert tickets, or choose to donate to charity or save for luxury items such as a new car. Spaarspot will be available beginning in Q2 2014 through Google Play and Apple App Store.
ABOUT SONIC NOTIFY:
Sonic Notify Inc. has been has been at the forefront of mobile proximity technologies since 2011, delivering powerful proximity marketing to smartphones and tablets, with over 14,000 beacon-enabled locations. Sonic Notify’s core content management system (CMS) provides clients with precise targeting and messaging capabilities, down to the individual shopper level. In addition, the system has a powerful analytics platform providing in-depth insights into customer needs, leading retailers to create truly engaging and valuable shopping experiences. Sonic Notify is headquartered in New York City, lead by professionals with experience from the digital ad serving, SaaS platform, and retail IT fields.comments powered by Disqus