Thinknear: Mobile, Geo-Targeting Are Changing In-Store Shopper Marketing Strategies

Before mobile, shopper marketing started when a customer entered the store. But location advertising has expanded the connections beyond the physical environment.

shopping cartThe ads nudging consumers to add a Mother’s Day gift across store aisles and at checkout is a perennial retail strategy that has been getting something of an update in recent years. Now, thanks to the constant connection of mobile devices, with brand and store apps being carried by consumers outside the store, the tactics associated with “shopper marketing” have been undergoing a slow, but steady evolution, as noted by location-based ad platform Thinknear in a recent blog post examining those changes.

“Shopper marketing has existed since the dawn of retail,” Thinknear point out, as a recent Mediapost article estimates that roughly $60 billion is spent on the practice. “It has evolved from window displays, store promotions, and circulars to motion-activated coupon dispensers, Point-Of-Sale tie-ins with promotional giveaways, and in-store media networks.”

Google has found that 84 percent of smartphone owners use their phone in a physical store. As such, the path-to-purchase in retail environments has broadened significantly. Before mobile, shopper marketing started when a customer entered the store. But now, marketers have the ability to extend strategies beyond the walls of the store to engage with shoppers before they arrive, after they leave, and when they’re at a competitor’s location, Thinknear says.

“Marketers also have access to more data than ever before,” Thinknear explains. “Location-based mobile data provides insights that can be used to better understand the consumer journey before and after their in-store experience, leading to better planning and engagement opportunities.”

In terms of what marketers should be considering when it comes to advancing their shopper marketing programs, Thinknear offers some point-by-point thoughts:

  • Discover the places in which shoppers live, work, and play to create rich user profiles that can be targeted. Location data is the “cookie” that unlocks the places your shoppers visit outside of your locations.
  • Retarget shoppers with an affinity for specific brands or retailers based on the locations they have visited in the past.
  • Localize your creative dynamically with information on pricing, store locations, and local deals or promotions for each specific store.
  • Leverage co-op marketing budgets more effectively by pairing product advertisements with “where to buy” information featuring specific brands.
  • Gain confidence in measuring foot traffic lift by partnering with vendors, such as Thinknear, who leverage objective third parties for foot traffic measurement.
  • Take full advantage of location data by using it in your planning process to better understand the types of people visiting your locations.
About The Author
David Kaplan David Kaplan @davidakaplan

A New York City-based journalist for over 20 years, David Kaplan is managing editor of A former editor and reporter at AdExchanger, paidContent, Adweek and MediaPost.