I bet you have heard this one before - "The right message to the right person at the right time"? It´s one of the most common taglines for beacon companies today. This is what so many beacon companies aim to deliver...
Let's dig a bit into the statement, and in reverse order. Do the companies deliver what they promise?
Right time - Yes. Luckily, this is what beacons enable. A push notification when the customer enters a specific physical locationRight person - Yes, they know who interacted with the beaconRight message - Well, this is the tricky one and where a lot of beacon companies don't always deliver on the promise.
In order to deliver the right message, it is crucial to know something about the customer. Who is she, what does she like and where has she been? Her preferences and profile will determine how she will react to the push message she receives, if it's successful and if she ends up buying the product or act as you want to.
To know something about the customer, insight and data are needed. The most sophisticated retailers and beacon companies in the Unacast PROX network tie CRM data to the beacon platform and use that knowledge to send a tailored and personal push notification.
But most of the beacon companies we speak to have ZERO data on the customers. Nada, nothing, jack shit!
Let me give you an example: When a customer leaves the shopping mall, he doesn't cease to exist. But for the shopping mall he does. The mall has no knowledge of what he does outside that particular location, and when he returns to the mall a week later the mall doesn't know what he has done in between the visits or what he is interested in. No wonder it's hard to send the right message.
Such an approach creates a new, and less compelling slogan, "The same message to all customers at the right time". By not knowing who their customers are, retailers and brands state the following: "Dear customer, we don´t know who you are, but let´s try to send you this generic message and cross our fingers that you like what you get".
I would argue that such an approach is risky, very risky, and something we as an industry should be careful about. If clients and beacon companies don't take the "right message" promise seriously or don't use data to decide what message should be sent to whom, their highly valued customers will not get right and relevant content to transform the push notification into a success and a purchase.
Irrelevant content will for sure result in customers disabling push notifications and bluetooth and in worst case uninstalling the app. And we don't want that, right?
So, using data and knowledge about the customers and where they have been is a critical element in creating compelling and successful beacon campaigns.
Unacast´s mission is to enable just that, on behalf of and to the benefit of the whole beacon industry. We interconnect the world's beacon companies to understand and create an anonymous holistic understanding of what customers do across all different physical locations. And we feed this knowledge back to the beacon companies so this data can be used to send the right message to the right customer based on on the customer's physical profile.
If we look at online advertising, historical behaviour, known as online cookies, it's what drives the industry and makes it so successful. Let´s take Amazon, they know what other websites and products I've looked at prior to typing in www.amazon.com. When I enter the site I immediately see a very tailored communication for the TV I´ve been researching the last 3 days. This is 100% the right message, to the right person at the right time. Why shouldn't it be like this in the beacon world as well? Well, it should, it's needed and it will.
As the backend of proximity, working with more than 25+ beacon companies globally, Unacast is on it's way to create an anonymous physical cookie, which all of the partners in Unacast PROX will benefit from and enable them to send the right message.
So far, our 25+ partners in the Unacast PROX network have already understood the value of knowing where customers have been to create better user experience towards their clients. In my view, these are leading the way and spearheading our industry. And I believe more companies will realize this fact soon, unfortunately some will go through a few unsuccessful campaigns first and learn it the hard way.
Only together we can make the tagline come true.
The right message. To the right person. At the right time.