I know what you did in Aisle 5

Indoor mapping of consumer location is the latest arrow in the quiver of the retail marketer. When marketers know where things are happening, they can develop interesting patterns for where to put resources like people, signage and information technology. Geolocation also provides the remarkable ability to spot the patterns that predict what to expect from consumers, and can be tested and continuously refined based on effectiveness and cost.

Marketers can also send messages directly to the consumer based on where they are in that very moment. They can say, “Hey, you were in Aisle 5 and showed interest in that new phone—here’s an offer for 10% off.”

Service versus stalking

But where does it start to look like stalking and less like helpful service? The difference between creepy and convenience is found in whether consumers are knowingly and willingly sharing details about their path through the store, mall or city, and how long they spend in any one spot. When they’re not agreeing to this level of data collection and use, the outcome looks much more like Big Brother.

Pretty soon, they’re not agreeing to share their location and turning off that app that tracks their location. Who wants that?

Loyalty to the rescue

There is a simple way to make the same information useful both for prediction and messaging. Loyalty programs are the permission that consumers give because they see the benefit of having a closer, more open relationship with the seller. Anyone considering geolocation software as a way to get closer to the shopping cart has to first take into consideration the permission required to stay above the creepy line.

It is that easy. Loyalty programs are the de-creeping of big data and the answer not just to today’s monitoring and analytics tools, like geolocation technology, but also to what’s certainly coming in the not-so-distant future.

Learn more about the tools and technologies that are helping to re-imagine loyalty marketing in this webinar.

This article first appeared on the Loyalty Lab blog and has been lightly edited.

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Categories: Loyalty, Marketing

Author:Jeanne Roué-Taylor

I'm fascinated by disruptive technology and its impact on our world. I manage sales operations for an excellent startup with a unique team of highly experienced data scientists.

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