Beacons Beckon ... No B.S.



Beacons are the new black. These cheap little things will be everywhere to "wake up" the right section of a mobile app that matches exactly where you are. 

Think about the value of instantly getting info on your phone about the product or service in front of you... then being able to take action, optin, share, purchase... skip a checkout line!


And we have vendor lessons to share!

The secret to Beacons is that they are the answer to customer service at the right time and place while building individual customer knowledge and increasing sales.

The goal is to use Beacon "touchpoints" of data to build a REAL profile of your customers and AUTOMATICALLY deliver relevant value at their points-of decision.


A Beacon can go anywhere. They do not need power because batteries last for years. They do not need internet connection since they merely transmit a signal that wakes up a sleeping mobile app that corresponds to that specific Beacon location.


They are cheap enough that you should not let price distract you from imagining the many opportunities to manage employees and satisfy more customers. Each Beacon is only about $25. Since they are always getting cheaper ... think "free" with the right partner.


See below for our "No B.S. Beacons Breakdown"- But first, related buzzwords and videos: 

VIP 3.0, Micro Geo Fence, Context for communication, Proximity Profiles, Predictive Customer Service, Wiser Wayfinding, a solution to Showrooming ... Digital Delivery for Analog Aspirations!

An overview from one of the vendors we select:


The market opportunity for retailers is huge... now:



No B.S. Beacon Breakdown:


Get the full range of opinions from videos of the sessions at Mediapost's recent Beacon conference  to learn about real world deployments by vendors, agencies, retailers, and the Brooklyn Museum. Here is the good intro overview panel. Another recent online event with more video sessions is BeaconConf (find speaker presos here).


Coupons, offers, and delivering deeper product data are all smart. But consider the ease of facility management (who is where... and what did they tweet)... allocate some Beacons to simply count customers in key locations... provide "you are here" maps, and even alerting your sales associates about a customer service opportunity!


30% of U.S. smartphones are currently enabled to connect to beacons using Bluetooth BLE

(Android 4.3 and iPhone 4S or later). As people upgrade their phones, this is expected to grow to 80% over the next 18 months 

> Having Bluetooth turned on is currently required ...but new easier triggers are being developed, such as existing wifi


> Having an integrated mobile app used to be required... but soon a customer only has to open a coded email on their smartphone.


> Having Beacons are not even necessary ... See how ByteLight uses LED lighting.


VentureBeat's enthusiastic overview reminds us that this is not only an Apple service and there are new solutions (including Android) that are constantly being developed to make deployments easier plus more effective and accountable.


So, it's getting better for Beacons every day...
It's the next land grab (literally) for the Internet of Things.


The exciting challenge is to offer valuable content so consumers opt-in, continue to engage, buy stuff, and share with their friends. Abuse of this channel is as likely as you see in all media.... only worse since the mobile phone is such a personal and important part of our lives.


Digital data feeds are the key. The more relevant the better. Can you deliver live, dynamic info related to a specific location? However, you can easily setup relevant content in advance that matches what you want to offer a customer in a specific location... and on their CUSTOM TOUR (I am yelling because this individualized service is what Beacons are best at).


Security and privacy are on the top of our list. We harness military-grade encryption and make sure that spoofers don't hijack anyone.


If you use the right Campaign Management System, the right data is easy to deliver to the right person at the right place. FYI, we have tested and chosen the best CMS.


Ready to play?

Everywhere... like here and here ... and wherever your prospects are...

           


(Thanks for the images Creative Commons Nitro, BII) 

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http://bit.ly/EatMediaBeacons

Hot Spot Parking is .... Hot.

HotSpotParking uses mobile phones to make paying for parking easier and more valuable to a community. More consumers will enjoy their downtown parking (and buying) experiences ... Mobile Beacon-enabled businesses pay to provide VIP services - like free parking - that encourage shopping ... cities get a free management platform... Everybody wins!

99% of Mobile Apps are only used once... the hard part is to provide enough value in a App that it is used... and becomes a communication channel. Call it a WELCOME Trojan Horse. 

So, here's the point, people will download and use an App to pay for parking... and love it when local merchants treat Beacon-triggered customers like VIPs and automatically engage through the App... 
and now (easily) pay for a customer's parking to keep them in store!

Check out our overview of Mobile Beacons HERE

Please click through these details:
This square with the arrows makes it bigger  ^^^

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Mobile Selling - Who, What, and Howler



   Howl-er   \ˈhau̇-lər\  
                   Noun, adjective, verb, etc.

   To yell or cry out without restraint.

   To share with strong impulse. 



You know that your best customer is the one in your store. Howler (at www.Howler.at) has a real solution to getting more of the right customer where and when you want them. 

Howler has a free mobile App that people will actually use to hear about the stuff they want... at the moment when they can get it ... in front of the right store ... right in front of them. 

This is one of those "smart" Apps that gets more valuable the more you use it. Simply set up the filters to ONLY tell you about what you want and when - the App notifies you when you are near it. Anything such as: meal-time deals that fit your diet, gift choices for Mom's birthday this weekend, Guinness on tap!

These are most welcome howls!

The real magic of their business model is that the store ONLY pays when someone walks into their store. A simple "cost for action" ... and that is worth howling about!

More soon...

My secret to one more happy customer

Dorothy and her posse needed help.

They relied on one crazy dude behind a curtain... it worked. Trust was built.

I have been using a whole team of crazy dudes and dudettes that have earned my trust with my online customer care.

So, as promised, I share the best services that I rely on... Business Plus One is worth sharing. See below for what they do and the ROI they deliver.

BPO has been tweaking the answer for a couple of years (mostly with hundreds of Planet Fitness locations). And now they are unveiling the best model for successfully managing and making money from Online Marketing, Search, and Social Media ... this is ... providing BOTH a great team AND a great technology platform to manage all of my online marketing. 


They are my secret team behind the curtain
for multi-location marketing nirvana.

See their 3 phases below - you need #1 and #2 before you reap the benefits of #3. Check out how they respond to and find LOCAL sales opportunities in YOUR conversations already happening across the Web...


Phase 1 - Create and Cleanup - We consolidate, merge and create the social media channels for every one of your locations. Each needs a single Facebook Places page, updated branding, cover photos, logos and tabs. We claim them under your own corporate email. We do the same for Google+/Maps, FourSquare, Bing and more. We make sure the hours of operation, location and links are accurate.
Results/ROI - Planet Fitness experienced a 40+% improvement in both traffic from better search engine optimization and online joins.
Phase 2 - Manage - Using our proprietary software, we connect all of those Facebook pages into one central dashboard where we can now see all incoming comments, respond to customer inquiries and post corporate approved messages, campaigns and branding. We provide access to each of these pages to franchisees through a password protected area of our software where they can post to their pages, but held in queue until we approve them to provide consistency in the branding and messaging. We would dedicate staff to your brand, train them to be capable of handling customer service inquiries and to answer basic requests.
Results/ROI - At Planet Fitness, Facebook Likes improved from 85k to over 1.1 million, YouTube views from 0 to over 10 million, Monthly reach on Facebook now exceeds 100 million
Phase 3 - Promote - Now that the infrastructure is built, we now have the ability to highly target customers at each location (Microtargeting). We build text, display, video and social media advertisements specific to each location and designed to advertise only to those in the geographic area who best meet the target demographic criteria.
Results/ROI - Planet Fitness now exceeds $800k in ROI from an advertising spend of less than $40k per month which is paid mostly by franchisees.

You know it works because I am "one more happy customer" sharing with you. Give me a call (617-331-7852 or dcutler@eatmedia.com) and I will tell you how happy I am that I got the courage to test and invest in BPO... yeah, I couldn't resist...

FYI - Share this post with http://bit.ly/BPOwizard

Let's take it to the slopes!

As many of you know, I am an avid skier and an apres-ski expert in training...

So... I am lucky to have a gig that combines my friend's and family's passion with my career goals of integrated marketing and Digital/Mobile experiences. I am adding interactive services and technology partnerships to a media network at over 1000 destinations worldwide.

So...
- If you ski or snowboard… let’s go! I have some cool tech and hidden powder to share.
- If you don’t … let’s get you started with a little “apres-ski” and some beautiful views.

Sure, we can talk about getting away and into nature for exercise and bonding with your buddies. There is a REAL need for getting out of our ruts and finding the healthy balance around all our responsibilities these days.

We will certainly share the marketing value of such an ideally positive, uncluttered environment for brands to participate and add utility to these fun-loving, receptive, mobile-obsessed “upscale actives” … yeah, a pretty good audience

Please check out what our teams in the US and Austria are up to at our Blog and News - http://sitourusa.com/blog/ - you will see the two taglines defining our mission: 
Advertise where they Play … and … Minds Open On The Mountain

I look forward to our chat (preferably on a chairlift) about the lessons we are learning as we focus on how to really engage ANY audience. Skiers just happen to be a lot of fun.


Caring and Sharing



Once again Seth Godin gives us hope that a personal philosophy of truth will help our professional world be more effective and meaningful...

In a recent inc. interview he chastises Marketers about not paying for attention... and if they are... they are not paying attention!



How can companies get marketing right?
Godin: Start by understanding that no one cares about them. People care about themselves.


 "Instead of thinking, "What do the masses want?," marketers need to think about what the people who care want. They are two different things. The masses aren't listening because they have so many other choices. The people who care are going to choose to listen. And by appealing to the people who care, it is way more likely that a company will be talked about".
So... target the customers who will care... and provide value so they care enough to share... and appreciate your brand and promise.
This is when we all love to love Seth... when he confirms the importance of OUR promise!

So... allow me to share... about how we care...

"Sitour" is a French mashup for Signature Touriste... Signage for Tourists. We really care about skiers and help these tourists (our people!) get around the big, beautiful ski resorts so they have more fun with their family, friends, and nature.

Our marketing and advertising services are for brands that want to join them and provide a PRESENCE WITH PURPOSE to an "Upscale Active" audience that are in a positive and receptive frame of mind.

We help brands deliver their message AND value to great people at hundreds of ski resorts around the US and the world... through live Analog and ongoing Digital interactions.

Call me, David Cutler, CEO of SitourUSA (dcutler@eatmedia.com or 617-331-7852) to share ideas around your existing brand promises or jump onto our many opportunities to provide instant and longterm value to what your new friends need and want ... VIP access to fun, sampling of food, drink, whatever ... free Mobile services... device charging...maps, weather, music!

We have been Experts On Snow successfully for 50 years. You are invited to join millions of us having the time of our lives at ski resorts ... where it is Après-Ski all day!


SitourUSA.com - Connecting Minds and Media

Jack Sez - Get Out!


Last week I was out at the Connect Conference for the Out-of-Home Industry.  Jack Myers (in the Bob Dylan t-shirt) knows how to MC the truth! My tweet: Out Of Home ad industry has been going digital and ready for Mobile @jackmyerscom #connect2014 #ooh 

The other Jack (Sullivan) from Starcom Mediavest is urging the industry to employ "Digital Designers" (nice term).


They talked about Mobile being a friend or foe... since it's obviously at the center of our world (particularly OOH), Mobile needs to be our best friend. The answer is in testing Mobile Marketing vendors and partners across all Media. They are starting well (but slow) with projects like the Gap's Mobile geo-fencing local bus shelters.

"Convergence is here (again)... this time between OOH and Mobile." (Heberle)

If you want more coolness that actually sells stuff (of course you do), ask me about the tech we are having the most success with ...  

Here is a great slide from Greg Stuart of the Mobile Marketing Assoc reminding us about the consumer's multimedia Path to Purchase (click to enlarge)...
  

The next most popular topic: Changing an "old school" media industry is...


Here is a nifty overview from the exceptional judges of the best of outdoor OBIE Awards 2014....