"The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it."
Terry Pratchet, Diggers
On the back of our BlueSky business cards among other things, we have beacon technology as one of the services we offer. Honestly, when someone flips the card over, we often get asked what is beacon technology?
Beacons are the future of marketing and offer a unique way of interacting with your customers through their Smartphone. They are essentially a positioning system device with a small wireless transmitter which are able to send a signal through Bluetooth, called Bluetooth Low Energy BLE for short. These signals are due to the location of the person and the Smartphone. They are a data gathering tool and can be set to send push notifications to the customer based on how close they are standing to the beacon.
In most cases, beacon technology is made up of a couple of things
Depending on the user and the business using beacons they can be used in different settings such as inside, outside or even in heavy-duty areas. As there are different casings, they can be adapted depending on where they are going to be located.
This is a fairly new way of marketing but is beneficial as this allows the business to grow and to improve the customers experience using technology. Putting the customer's relationship first this allow marketers to really tailor solutions directly for their customers. In turn increasing sales, better communication as beacons allows specialist notifications to be personalised.
Let's have a look at a couple of industries that beacons are helpful in.
In a retail setting, beacons can be set up to enhance the customer's experience. Imagine window shopping outside your favourite store and then you look down at your phone seeing you have received a notification from the store letting you know you have a discount code to use on exactly what you were looking at in the window. You would feel more tempted to walk inside now.
How this works it is been in close proximity to the beacon which is set up at a certain distance decided by the store while the customer is logged into their phone app. This is set up to notify the customers of current promotions and what's happening in-store on the day. It helps the retailer drive sales tailored to their customers and for the customer to receive a great deal, it's a win/win situation for both parties.
With travellers visiting places they aren't familiar they want to know what sites to visit and what the local area can offer in regards to sightseeing, points of interest and must see's. Imagine as a traveller you were able to log into the local area phone app, make your way to the Visitor's Centre have notifications sent to your phone with what's happening on the day, where to visit and other points of interest. Allowing the travellers to have a really great experience, promote local operators and generate more revenue for the local area.
These are only 2 examples of industries, but absolutely not limited to only these as many industries have already seen the benefits of beacon technology.
Apple, Google and Twitter are using beacons within their business so why aren't you?