After Retail Stumble, Beacons Shine From Banks to Sports Arenas
December 5, 2016 9:00 AM EST
In a show of confidence, Mobile Majority buying Gimbal
Shipments of the devices expected to grow to 500 million
Beacon technology, which was practically left for dead after failing to deliver on its promise to revolutionize the retail industry, is making a comeback.
Beacons are puck-size gadgets that can send helpful tips, coupons and other information to peoples smartphones through Bluetooth. Theyre now being used in everything from bank branches and sports arenas to resorts, airports and fast-food restaurants. In the latest sign of the resurgence, Mobile Majority, an advertising startup, said on Monday that it was buying Gimbal Inc., a beacon maker it bills as the largest independent source of location data other than Google and Apple Inc.
Retail has gotten a lot of attention, but we actually see a huge pickup in other industries as well, said Thomas Walle, chief executive officer of Unacast, which aggregates data collected from beacons for advertisers. Now airports and transportation is probably the largest. Sports stadiums is huge -- more than 60 percent of all large sports stadiums in the U.S. are beacons-enabled.
Apple launched its iBeacon protocol in 2013, laying the foundation for whats now called the proximity industry, where advertisers can target consumers based on their super-precise location. The number of shipments of Bluetooth low-energy beacons is expected to grow to 500 million by 2021, up from 8.2 million this year, according to ABI Research.
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Several recent developments have sparked the latest boom. Companies like Google parent Alphabet Inc. are making it possible for people to use the feature without downloading any apps, which had been a major barrier to adoption, said Patrick Connolly, an analyst at ABI. Introduced this year, Google Nearby Notifications lets developers tie an app or a website to a beacon to send messages to consumers even when they have no app installed.
With Google and Apple driving and pushing the market around new tools enabling proximity, we see this as opening the door for more enterprises adopting this technology, said Brian Dunphy, a senior vice president at Gimbal.
Read more: Apple IBeacon Is Yet to Flare
More sophisticated software used to manage and set up beacons is making the technology more cost effective. In the past, companies had to plaster their walls and ceilings with the devices, and keeping track of where they were and periodically replacing batteries was an expensive headache.
But in June, Cupertino, California-based Mist Systems began shipping a software-based product that simplified the process. Instead of placing 10 beacons on walls and ceilings, for example, management using Mist can install one device every 2,000 feet (610 meters), then designate various points on a digital floor plan as virtual beacons, which can be moved with a click of a mouse.
Weve eliminated the biggest obstacles, said Jeff Aaron, vice president of marketing at Mist.
As the market moves to virtual beacons, cost of the devices could drop from as much as $20 today, ABIs Connelly said. You could even be getting into cents, less than $1 per beacon.
Among the examples of the growing use of beacon technology:
On Nov. 22, Diebold Nixdorf announced it will integrate beacon software into its ATMs, so customers would see personalized ads on their screens. The technology can also let financial institutions detect and identify consumers as they approach a branch lobby.
In March, Citigroup Inc. made beacons available at a few branches in Manhattan, to let customers enter the lobby after hours by using their iPhones or Apple Watches, instead of bank cards. Citigroup spokeswom
Alzheimers Research UK has launched a proximity campaign to promote its Santa Forgot Christmas video produced by Aardman Animations, and voiced by Stephen Fry.
The charity is working with Proxama to reach consumers with its promotional video via their smartphones, through in-app advertising to the Bus Times London or Tube Map apps, triggered when the user comes within range of a beacon. Proxamas beacon network covers buses, taxis, cinemas, convenience stores, and billboards.
Bus users with one of the apps installed, for example, will see a contextual notification welcoming them aboard the bus and giving them route details after they have been on the bus for one minute. A couple of seconds later, they will be served the ad promoting the video.
In addition, the campaign is also using Googles Physical Web platform to promote the video. When an Android user comes within range of one of Proxamas beacons, so long as they have Bluetooth switched on, they will receive a Google Nearby notification (identified by a small diamond at the top left of the screen). When they click on the notification, it takes them to a branded landing page which leads to a YouTube link to the video.
No app, other than the Chrome app which comes pre-installed on Android handsets, is required for the Physical Web notification to be delivered. iPhone users with the Chrome app installed (around 10 per cent of the installed base) will also receive the notification. Proxama is one of two certified location services providers for the Physical Web worldwide.
Proxama CEO John Kennedy said: The Christmas period sees thousands of brands vying for consumers attention. This can create major challenges, particularly for charities that can sometimes struggle to get their voices heard.
Using proximity marketing methods enabled by our beacon network will help AR UK deliver their content to members of the public at the right time, cutting through the noise. With Alzheimers disease and other dementias now the UKs biggest killer, we know how important awareness-raising can be and are proud to be supporting them with this.
The campaign, created in collaboration with Exterion Media, Ubiquitous and Primesight, launches this Saturday and runs through to 10 December. It highlights the problems people face when dealing with dementia and aims to point out that anybody, even Santa, can be affected. It focuses on the character of Freya, a young girl who has grown-up in a world where Santa has stopped visiting on Christmas Eve, and her efforts to help find a way to fix Saint Nicks dementia.
London department store Fortnum & Mason goes all out for Christmas. Image courtesy of Fortnum & Mason
By Noor Naseer
We are rapidly approaching the most wonderful time of the year again. In preparation, marketers have been gearing up for the holiday shopping season which comprises as much as 30 percent of retailers fiscal-year sales. And this year, the stakes are higher than ever.
The National Retail Federation expects overall holiday sales to grow 3.7 percent, reaching $630 billion. Savvy consumers start holiday shopping earlier every year 29 percent of consumers start buying before Halloween.
As consumers get bombarded with advertisements and promos, it becomes more important than ever for retailers to distinguish themselves. This is where beacon technology can make a difference.
Through a retailers application, beacons can deliver highly targeted messages to shoppers smartphones as they browse aisles, leading them right to the products they want, as well as comparable recommendations.
Marketers can use behavioral data from beacons and app activity to deliver promotional messages and shopping opportunities as consumers actively place items into their carts.
The holidays are a good time to evaluate how to use beacon technology with marketing efforts.
Deliver what shoppers want
An increasing volume of retailers is in a favorable position to implement beacons.
Eighty-five percent of consumers prefer to shop in a physical store, and 90 percent of consumers shop with their phones while in-store.
With 55 percent of shoppers naming in-store promotions as the best enhancement to the experience, beacon-enabled marketing messages present a great opportunity to convert customers.
Beacons can be used to give customers in-store promotions, exclusive coupons and discounts, or self-pay options to avoid long lines.
Infrastructure and setup
Marketers wanting to implement beacons should be aware of the infrastructure challenges.
These Bluetooth-operated sensors must be in all locations where notifications will be pushed to patrons.
Beyond that, a scalable amount of consumers must be aware of the app and use it while in-store, with push notifications activated. Otherwise, they will not receive messaging.
For that reason, marketers must invest in monitoring and encouraging app adoption.
Setting up beacon technology can be work-intensive, but the returns can be well worth it.
The consumers who marketers are able to identify are not only in the correct target audience they are also in the right shopping mindset. The brand is reaching them in-store as they are actively making purchase decisions.
That is the beautiful thing about beacons: The brand can have a direct conversation with the right consumer, in the right app, in the right store, at the right time.
Beacons have been a prominent fixture in Macys in-store holiday marketing.
After installing beacon technology in 4,000 of its locations to boost holiday sales in 2014, the retail giant launched its Walk in and Win beacon campaign on Black Friday 2015. It offered shoppers $1 million in gift codes and branded experiences through a beacon-based mobile game.
The campaign not only helped to drive app downloads during a major shopping holiday, but it also enabled Macys to boost in-store engagement.
Where beacons advertising is going
Some mobile location tech companies are taking advantage of what beacons have to offer by setting up physical beacons at various points of interest, to listen to and gather customer location data to improve the hyper-local advertisements that they are serving.
Data from beacon signals are also becoming available for media buyers in ad-exchange app inventory.
Tech companies can gather anonymized retailer data on customers and leverage it to better understand the preferences and interests of individual users.
Proxamas Digital Payments Division worked with Nets to implement Proxamas PIN Manager a digital credential lifecycle management system.
Nets is a leading card payments processor in the Nordic and Baltic regions of Europe, whose clients include over 260 banks with over 33 million payment cards under management.
The paper-based methods of PIN management previously used by Nets in common with many other issuers and processors were costly, inconvenient and potentially insecure. Costs included stationery and secure printing, and postage of a paper PIN Mailer to the customer which opens up vulnerabilities of PINs being intercepted or being misplaced. All while the customer experienced a number of days delay before being able to activate and start using their card.
Nets needed a PIN management solution that would deliver cost savings to their card-issuing clients while improving both security and customer service to the cardholder.
Nets implemented Proxamas PIN Manager solution. Bringing PIN management into the digital age, it supports every event in PIN lifecycles in a modern, flexible and cost effective solution. It improves security, reduces costs and offers card holders a faster and easier way to access and manage their PIN credentials.
Featuring strong hardware cryptography (HSMs) to protect PINs at all times, Proxamas PIN Manager was implemented alongside Nets existing card management and processing systems, complying with PCI guidelines, card network security requirements and international standards.
Cardholders can now pre-select their PIN before their card is issued, and have their PIN delivered through a range of secure PIN delivery channels such as SMS and web banking.
Secure distribution options for new PINs and reminders across multiple electronic channels eliminated security concerns around the interception of mail, reduced the cost of stationery, specialist printing and postage of PINs, and dramatically reduced waiting times for customers. The ability to use their card immediately on receipt eliminated the loss of several days interchange income and reduced the risk of another card becoming the top of wallet favourite.
Nets Business Manager and executive of Nets PIN digitalization project, Tuomas Haapaniemi said:
We are always looking for ways to help our card issuing customers be more successful. To do so we need to invest in modern systems that provide additional capabilities and improve efficiencies. With our selection of Proxama we are able to do just that. They have proved to be a great partner very collaborative and experts in this specialist field.
On 8th November 2016, Unacast released their Proxbook Q3 report on Proximity marketing in airports and transportation 2016. The conclusion voted Proxama as the top proximity solutions provider globally.
Screen Shot 2016-11-09 at 13.02.10
The proximity marketing world is fast becoming the top future technology for businesses to engage with; along with Bluetooth beacons and Physical Web. Google reported in 2016 that on average 50% of users have Bluetooth on, helping to unlock the benefits awaiting consumers via Beacons. Because of this, proximity solution providers are continuing to broaden their product portfolio and are adding more value to their solutions. These benefits are used by more that 15 different industries; the top 5 being retail, shopping malls, hotels and tourism, stadiums & sports and Airports.
Earlier this year Proxama worked with Mapway to deploy the largest iBeacon consumer transport experience on London buses. Proxama integrated beacon mobile SDKs into Mapways bus times London app to deliver real-time travel updates and contextual in-app ads for the reachable consumer audience of half a million during their travels. The results showed a 45% unique Click Through Rate (CTR) on utility led notifications and a 9-15% CTR across interstitial adverts served.
Beacon technology within transport is still growing; with 84% of global airports set to be running a pilot or implementing beacon technology by 2019 and 50% of those global airports already planning to capitalize on beacon data.
Read the full report here.
Contact Us to find out more about enhancing your media assets with the power of Proximity, or to utilise the network as part of your mobile proximity marketing strategy.
Proxbook, the world's largest directory of proximity companies, has released its Q3 2016 Proxbook Report, which has aggregated information from more than 350 Proximity Solution Providers and reveals the latest trends, facts and figures from the global proximity industry as well as the growth and opportunity for proximity marketing in the transportation industry including airports and ground mass transit. This is the 6th edition of the Proxbook Report.
'The Q3 Proxbook Report is the most in-depth analysis of the proximity technology specific to the transportation industry, said Thomas Walle, co-founder & CEO of Unacast. 'With an 'always connected' customer base of travelers, proximity technology presents a massive opportunity for transportation providers and their partners to communicate with passengers in real time. We already see that the transportation industry is a leading vertical in being smart with their data by monetizing their infrastructure. What is even more impressive is the fact that the majority of transportation companies currently planning their deployments are already looking to capitalize on the data.
Key Transportation Statistics
35% of the top 20 American airports have already deployed beacons.
90% of global airports are undertaking either a major program or a trial project related to mobile apps.
Nearly half of airports (48%) are implementing commercial sensor deployments over the next three years.
36% of airports are implementing a proximity pilot project. Only 16% of airports have no plans with sensor technology currently.
Half (49%) of airports planning to directly contact passengers via their mobile phone over the next three years.
According to SITA, by 2019 84% of airports plan to monetize the data collected through mobile interactions and proximity interactions within the next three years.
The mobile app is a bottleneck for many proximity projects, mainly because marketers are struggling to provide real value with an app. This is not the case in transportation, as an Exploratory Analysis of a Transit App in New York City found that 80% of users are using the app two times or more per day. This opens the perfect window for timely and relevant customer communication. This exploratory analysis found that the MTA could increase its annual revenue by as much as $350M while increasing the ticket price as little as 5%. A proximity solution on top of the central app would provide immense value and further increase the satisfaction for riders by using real-time information, loyalty programs and indoor navigation. Monetization of that data presents an interesting opportunity for brands/retailers and other interested parties looking to reach everyday riders.
'The Zurich main station is Switzerland's largest and most complex train station and Swiss Federal Railways SBB hub for innovative services. Together with Infsoft GmbH, we equipped the train station with over 200 shops with more than 1200 Beacons to provide indoor navigation and location based special deals through the app 'My station.' The project was very successful and in the next step, we want to expand the location based services to offer better interaction with our customers, said David Wenger, Marketing & Communication at Zurich Main Station.
Support for Google's Eddystone beacon has risen 6 percentage points from Q2 to a total of 55% of the industry.
The first Proximity Solution Provider index (PSPi) ranks Proxbook profiles and is automatically calculated based on whether the company is in commercial or pilot stage, number of use cases, geographic presence, number of clients, sensors deployed, and employees. The PSPi is divided by hardware and platform:
Top 5 Hardware:
1) Estimote (US)
2) Kontakt.io (Poland)
3) Accent Systems (Spain)
4) Cisco (US)
5) Sensoro (US)
Top 10 Platforms:
1) Proxama (UK)
2) Gimbal (US)
3) In T
Working with twitter, thanks to plunge across the way.
Brands who use Twitter direct message as a customer service tool should be pretty happy with the platform's latest addition.
Twitter is now allowing brands to set their own welcome message, which automatically appears when a user opens the DM box. This tells customers how they can interact with the brand and can include deep links and other features.
But the magic is in the platform's new Quick Replies feature, essentially a chatbot which prompts people with suggestions as to how to reply and in return provides answers.
MarketingTech tried out the new functionality on three brands' Twitter accounts to see how it's being used.
We found that Pizza Hut, for example, is using the DM facility to guide people into ordering food via Twitter - along with a very tasty picture of some delicious-looking pizza (which only served to encourage us even further).
However, when you reply to this, the bot simply sends the same message again - giving us the impression that while the basic functionality is there, the chatbots aren't yet massively intuitive or personality-driven.
We then tried out Tesco's DM to see what it had in store. Interestingly, this was very different, providing a menu of options for us to choose from.
While this is vastly helpful, clicking on one of the options (we chose the first one) takes the menu away, and the only way to get it back is to delete your DM conversation and start again.
However, our favourite use of the bot was from The Weather Network. As you can see below, it was the most interactive, asking us lots of questions to get to the right results.
Following this conversation, we were asked if we wanted to sign up for daily weather updates, which facilitates an ongoing conversation between the brand and customer, should they choose to accept.
The examples above show that brands can really get a lot out of this new functionality - but you a) must first have or encourage people to chat with you via DM and b) work on getting the right combination of welcome message and quick reply.
It's certainly worth spending time setting this up properly, and incentivising customers to speak to you via DM as it cuts out a lot of time spent answering replies.
The new features are as a result of Twitter's work with martech companies such as Lithium, Proxama and Sprout Social, amongst others, and they're working to bring more functionality around this to customers soon, too.
For brands wanting to get started, you can look at the support settings page of Twitter dashboard. For some more ideas of how brands are using this, check out: @EvernoteHelps, @PizzaHut, @AirbnbHelp,@SpotifyCares, @NortonSupport, @Tesco, @TfLTravelAlerts,@WeatherNetwork, and @AirTailor.
Software developed and tested on Norwich streets could soon be making its way to cities like Paris and New York.
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Surrey Street-based tech firm Proxama has used connections with digital giants Google and Apple as well as brands such as Coca Cola to position itself at the front of proximity marketing software in the UK.It is part of a strategy to see the company, which reported losses of £2.94m in its half-year results up to June 30 down from £4.6m in 2015, break even by 2017.In a world with ad-block being able to target advertising directly to consumers is becoming an important way for businesses to improve their penetration.The AIM-listed company has already created a beacon network across London from which advertisers can send their messages to consumers smart phones as they travel on buses or the Tube. Now the company is aiming to branch out by building a network abroad with vibrant cities such as Paris and New York being considered as possibilities.Proxama chief executive John Kennedy said: We are looking to expand into another city but it would need to have the footfall of millions of people to make it worthwhile.It would also need to be the kind of place that big brands want to be seen.We are in the position where we are reasonably comfortable, now it is about making it 24/7, 365 days a year.We will expand beyond London in the next few weeks.Mr Kennedy added the destination had not been decided yet but work would begin in the near future.The firm will look to work with app companies and advertisers as it has in London to saturate busy areas.Working with app Mapway and ad-group Exterion Media, the company has been able to target adverts across London and has also worked on a campaign for Coca Cola brand Glaceau Smartwater across the city.Using bluetooth technology Proxama is able to place people to a 10m radius meaning adverts can be made relevant depending on what is around you and what you might be doing. One example was working with the newspaper
Turns out, it has. Spotted by thereaper over on LSE
In Operating Review - Half Yearly Report...
These decisions by the industry's major players are all combining to support our positioning and the importance of continuing to build out our leading UK beacon network. All major London public transport types are now covered, with a majority using the latest dual beacons (supporting both Apple iBeacon and Google Eddystone formats); we have partnered with most of the major OOH media players, across London bars and pubs, cinemas, regional trains, buses, taxis, airports and bars around the 20 English Premier League football grounds. Our current proximity network capability stands at around 4,000 beacons...
I'd expected the Half Year report late last week/early this week, but it looks like it's going to be late. Hopefully it's because there's so much good news to report! I'd also like to think it's because they're finalising the sale of the Payments Division and want to include it.
Does anyone have a 2-3 year sp target on prox? It's such a game changer in the retail/advertising world, I'm of the opinion it could easily hit 20-30p.
Hi TJHadder, I agree with you, the potential for PROX is massive. I resist the temptation 'to sell for quick profit and buy back in' as there's a high chance of doing what you did, sell at 0.97p and buy back in at 1.12p thus losing the gains from sell to buy sp. I'm in for medium term through the falls and rises unless, of course, something happens that means I should sell. My avg sp is 0.59p and I hope to 10-bag in the next two years !! I also have Strat Aero, a riskier investment but beginning to look better as it gets decent new business. We all want quick profits, but Patience is the key to larger profits !!
As the U.K.s largest betting company, William Hill Plc. has thousands of retail locations, not to mention the stadiums, playing fields and racecourses where betting occurs, said Alex Rutherford, Head of Mobile Sportsbook. After seeing William Hills location-targeted push messages achieve 400 percent greater engagement than non-location-targeted messages, were evaluating getting even more granular with proximity-targeting through beacons.
John Kennedy, chief executive of Proxama, said that the firm could also target people who were idly staring at their phone.
He said: 'This is aimed at anyone sitting in a taxi or bus and looking at their phone. Bookmakers absolutely love the opportunity to reach the consumer when they are sitting in a bar on their phone.
'They can offer them special odds for a game they are about to see in 60 minutes. They know where people are at that point.
'Having the endorsement and trust of Google really emphasises that we want to be the only company to work with in the UK if you want to do this stuff.
That last quote...wow..
And that's both Civil AND Retail.
500 London buses and the original Government grants prove to me that we'll be a preferred Government contractor.
The Tube has wifi now..How many journeys at day is that?
We OWN London...
Our platform audience will grow and grow..
Our customer list will be blue chip royalty.
PS ..This is Ad tech...The M&A epicentre of the world.
Someone is going to want to own a big chunk of us very soon.
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