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BizReport : Advertising archives : March 04, 2010

Placecast's ShopAlerts puts consumers in driving seat

If there's one thing that will kill a consumer communications channel it's spam, and mobile is perhaps the channel most ripe for the unscrupulous. Placecast's location-based advertising service gives consumers the control they need to ensure they get only the messages they deem relevant.

by Helen Leggatt

With 1020 Placecast's ShopAlerts program consumers are able to control which companies they receive advertising messages from, their preferred format (SMS/MMS) and the number of ads sent. Opt-in can be achieved via a variety of channels including websites, responding to text ads or in-store.

This relevancy of communication should help raise consumer trust in mobile advertising and help drive foot-traffic and sales to brick and mortar stores.

ShopAlerts' messaging is fine-tuned by the use of "geo-fencing" technology. A "geo-fence" is a virtual perimeter around a particular location. When someone steps into the geo-fenced area, a text message is sent, but only if consumers have opted in to receive messages.

"Geo-fence technology represents the next frontier for digital marketing as consumers expect to connect with brands at the right place and time, all via their mobile device," said Alistair Goodman, CEO for 1020 Placecast.

North Face recently employed 1020 Placecast's location-based advertising technology to lure consumers into their stores. According to the New York Times, "Placecast created 1,000 geo-fences in and around New York, San Francisco, Seattle and Boston, cities where the North Face has many stores and areas that get a lot of snow or rain, so the company can tailor its messages to the weather. In urban areas, the fences are up to half a mile around stores, and in suburban areas they are up to a mile around stores".

ShopAlerts took 1st place in the Mobile App category at the first-ever National Retail Federation Innovation & Marketing Conference held in San Francisco last week.

Tags: location-based marketing, mobile advertising, mobile marketing, mobile phone

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