If location data lies at the heart of personalised experiences, how can brands use data to join the dots around the consumer? In the final installment of a five-part series from The Drum and Verve on Everything You Need to Know (EYNTK) About Location-Based Advertising, we explore the future of mobile location data intelligence.
Brands need to stay tuned to the changing mindsets of their customers. According to a study by Goldsmiths University and Adobe, 75% of marketing leaders admit to not understanding changing consumer behavior – which is having an impact on their business performance. The study further found that the brands that adapt their strategies tend to outperform those that are still using traditional loyalty programs by as much as 14%.
What does all this mean for marketers? As Ian James, general manager international at Verve, explains, this new wave of expectation and demand, driven by younger generations such as Generation Z – a generation that has never lived without a mobile device – is resulting in new challenges for marketers as they struggle to target these consumers effectively.
For James the solution is simple: location data is the key to understanding a consumer’s real-life behaviors and movements. “Going forward, using data directly from the device will play a significant role in data strategy and planning for marketers,” he explains.
It is a trend being seen by Eric Visser, chief exec of JustPremium, as he says Gen Z and millennials expect their online experiences to be personalized as a standard measure. “We already see it starting but in the future this expectation will track back to older generations,” he notes.
Amit Dar, strategic partnerships lead at Taptica warns brands of the consequences of not adapting, given how the traditional taxi model has been impacted by the introduction of Uber. He says brands need be smarter about how they use location data, citing his work with a premium taxi service ahead of the Pride festival in London as an example.
“We produced creative ads on Twitter that incorporated the Pride branding and specific keywords such as LGBT and ‘pride parade’, plus a relevant discount – and these resulted in higher engagement, volume of impressions and app installations overall, as well as delivering the lowest cost per impression,” he adds.
Where is the future heading in this space?
With 2018 looming, Forrester predicts the year will be one of reckoning for brands as “evolving customer expectations will challenge everybody”. The leaders that adapt will thrive and those that don’t will ultimately struggle.
For Raman Sidhu, vice-principal of business development at Beemray, brands are yet to realize the potential of mobile location data intelligence, due to “disparate capabilities” between marketers and advertisers. But he sees this changing in the future. “More brands will be taking advantage of the products they can build with location audience data, to offer their customers valuable experiences, and to do so with scale in mind.”
Danny Lopez, chief operating officer of Blippar, envisions a future where marketers will be able to map out their customer base more accurately, “understanding their favourite stores, products or food according to their latest journeys but also give them customized experiences according to where they are at that exact moment.”
And what if a brand misses the mark? It could result in an abrupt dismissal, according to Christopher Baldwin, head of marketing, Northern Europe at Selligent who says Gen Z and millennials are “notoriously entitled” – with a “delitist” attitude.
“Delitists” will unsubscribe and cut all communication ties to a brand that makes a mistake or appears to be wholly irrelevant,” he warns. “Using location is one way in which marketers can increase contextual relevancy in real-time to avoid this.”
Dan Bladen, chief executive and co-founder of Chargifi, sees wireless charging not only being offered as a service by brands – but also giving them an opportunity to monetize their investment by understanding more about the consumer during the charging experience.
“Wireless charging will be extended to laptops and even cars over the coming years and so there will be increasing opportunities to target an individual in the workspace, at home, socially or on the move,” he says.
As the series wraps up and brands anticipate 2018, James reiterates that location data is the missing link in “marketing’s true cross-platform strategy”. Whether brands will adapt to this new future is up to them.