With more and more Americans using smartphones than ever before, one of the advanced features utilized is the GPS and various other geolocation services. For the consumer, the ability to check-in to locations, track where other friends are at any given time, and find services and stores that are closest to them at that point in time is extremely valuable. The value in using these services can go both ways. In fact, geolocation services can be leveraged to be one of the more effective marketing strategies for small businesses.
According to eMarketer, 74 percent of smartphone users and 46 percent of adult mobile phone users overall accessed location-based information services, statistics that were up significantly from the previous year. With this information in mind, small businesses can effectively promote deals and other relevant information about their services through social media networks. Anything from push notifications, location-aware applications or location-based loyalty programs could be effective tools.
There are several tips for building geolocation into your social media and marketing strategy. According to Social Media Examiner, the most important thing to do is merely to remind fans and followers to check-in and potentially find great promotions. Encouraging geolocation cross-promotion across different networks that your company is involved in is another effective way to branch out and reach a wider group of customers.
Another effective way of maximizing geolocation services is to implement a geofencing initiative. According to eMarketer, a geofence is a virtual perimeter that companies establish around a physical location, such a retail outlet or an airport. They can then use an opt-in method to send text or push notifications to mobile devices within the defined area. A restaurant could issue a one-hour promotion to any of its social network fans and consumers if they’re within that locality at the time, allowing the store to literally attract instant business.
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