Geofencing gives businesses the power to target ads and promotions to potential customers within a specific geographic area. This hyper-targeted, location-based type of marketing is an increasingly important trend today as it enables brands to engage with their market in a whole new way—with relevant and interactive content being sent directly to customers’ smartphones.
But how exactly can you adopt this marketing trick to take your business to the next level?
First, how does geofencing work?
In geofencing, a virtual boundary is constructed around a businesses physical location using various technologies—such as GPS (Global Positioning System) accessed through cellular networks or Wi-Fi. When a customer enters the set boundary, it then triggers a specific action (such as sending alerts) from a software.
Say business X has an ongoing 40% off promotion; when a potential customer is detected to enter the store’s vicinity, they will automatically receive a notification on their smartphone informing them of the promotion (and maybe an additional discount coupon—there’s really no limit to this). Businesses can quantify what it means to be ‘’within the vicinity” themselves, whether that means a half-mile radius or two.
Geofencing isn’t exactly new, but the ubiquity of smartphones and other mobile devices makes it an extra-powerful tool these days. According to Pulsate, 30% of people worldwide use location-based services—and an astounding 80% of them have expressed their desire to receive location-based alerts from businesses.
Why should I jump in?
Geofencing offers a lot more than what meets the eye. If you’re a business owner or a marketer looking to amp up your digital marketing strategy, geofencing can give you the following benefits:
- Improved location insights: You can harness a lot of information from geofencing. Once a customer visits your store because of it, you can measure metrics like duration of visit, amount spent, and promotion effectiveness. You’ll also earn valuable insights like the frequency with which specific audience segments visit your store or how often they are in your vicinity. Combining these pieces of information with analytical tools can greatly help you fine-tune your entire digital marketing strategy.
- Increased engagement: With geofencing, you make your brand ultra-relevant to your customer at the best times. Whether you end up making a sale or not, a customer that receives personalised offers from your brand will likely have that “this company really knows me” feeling.
- Increased sales: Obviously, geofencing done right would always lead to better sales. It would allow you to exploit the earning opportunity that lies within each customer in your area.
- Cost-effectiveness: Geofencing can help you achieve a more cost-effective marketing spend, since it allows you to reach the most relevant audience at the right time.
- Local SEO optimisation: Using geofencing can really help you nail down great results in terms of local SEO. After all, this location-based tactic really specifies what locality you’re in, making you more relevant and high-ranking in local searches.
Some tips for incorporating geofencing into your strategy
Now let’s talk about using geofencing to advance your business. Keep the following tips in mind if you’d like to enjoy the benefits of this kind of marketing. As with any other tactic, reaping the rewards that come with geofencing requires thoughtful planning and implementation.
1. Study your audience
Know your audience before launching a geofencing campaign. What are they like? What promotions would seem attractive to them? How often can you expect them to be near your store? And then plan accordingly.
2. Being too far-reaching might not work
One very important thing to note when it comes to geofencing is that a customer will always have the power to allow or disallow the sharing of their location information. As such, anyone can easily revoke tracking access anytime.
When an individual starts receiving alerts that aren’t really that relevant to his current position, the higher are the chances of the said customer opting to block the source of annoyance. With that said, don’t go overboard with the radius you select for your geofence. Try to keep it within a five-minute radius (travel time measured by foot or by car, whichever is more appropriate according to your location).
3. Use clear CTAs
It’s important to use clear and concise calls-to-action when sending out promotions. Remember, the aim here is to drive as many instant conversions or store visits as possible. Whether you’d like your customers to simply pay you a visit, check out a particular deal, or try out a new product, communicate that clearly and be as specific as you possibly can.
4. Explore geofencing for social media apps
Social networks like Facebook and Instagram allow geofencing advertising and location targeting on ads ran on the platform. But more than that, you can also add in a bit more creativity by utilising geofencing in a whole new way.
McDonald’s is a great example of this. Snapchat users who are near a McDonald’s restaurant are given access to exclusive Snapchat Geofilters that feature their world-famous fries. These branded filters let users interact with the brand in a fun new way. More importantly, it puts McDonald’s in the forefront of the consumer’s consciousness, increasing the likelihood of them paying the nearby branch a visit.
5. Send out promotions
There are many types of promotions available to you. You can give out special discounts, gifts, or coupons. If you have a loyalty program and a member is detected in your area, you can send out an alert that advertises twice the loyalty points if they make a purchase that day. Really, there’s no limit to what you can come up with, so don’t be afraid to get creative.
Geofencing might be an unfamiliar strategy to some, but it can really impact the path of digital marketing in the future. Harnessing its power would help your brand interact better with customers. Once you perfect the craft of creating personalised and targeted offers, you become ultra-relevant to your customers and their needs.
To help your brand get the most out of your audience targeting, reach out to us today and our experienced digital marketing professionals will get you where you need to be.