There is no arguing the fact that technology has changed the whole landscape of business. First the Internet, then Mobility / Cloud, and now the Internet of Things. Even for an entrepreneur like me, it has had a deep impact on my business. I have owned a retail outlet for a while now and have always sought ways to enhance the in-store shopping experience for my customers. I tried many options but nothing really worked for me. I realized that, day by day, my revenues and sales were falling and if this situation continued, I would have little choice but to shutter my operation.
I shared my concerns with one of my friends who advised me to look into Proximity Marketing using Bluetooth beacon technology. I never heard of it before so I asked him if he could explain this solution to me. He described Proximity Marketing as a solution in which one deploys beacons within a location (e.g. my store) and the beacons send notifications to smartphones.
These notifications can send consumers relevant offers and promote the latest deals. The solution can also be used to:
locate items within the store to enhance the in-store shopping experience
increase revenue per square feet
provide opportunities for impulse purchases
move slow selling merchandise to achieve faster inventory turnover.
These were all critical metrics to a retailer like myself and sounded like music to my ears.
I became very excited because I knew that I had found a marketing tool that could provide me with a significant competitive advantage. So the next decision I had to make was finding a vendor whose platform best fit my needs. In that vein, I began compiling a set of feature set comparison points and came up with a shortlist of must-haves. These included:
A software as a service platform (SAAS) that I didn’t have to invest heavily in hardware and infrastructure
A platform that provided all the necessary beacon and sensor technologies needed for my establishment
An easy to administer administration panel for me to manage my campaigns and notifications
A simple mobile experience for my customers that would engage them and keep them coming back
Analytics/reporting to analyze which campaigns worked and which ones did not work
Advanced features I could add as my business expanded
I ordered various toolkits to experiment with and found the Netobjex platform to be the most capable and mature solution for my business. Proximity Marketing is definitely the tool I needed for my in-store marketing solution as well as a means to attract walk-in clientele into my store. IoT technology has a lot to offer and I am looking forward to expanding my Proximity Marketing campaigns through the use of more advanced capabilities such as beacons and sensors. Can’t wait to get started on that next!