As a marketing professional or business owner, you may have heard of the advertising technique known as geofencing marketing. You may be wondering, what really is geofencing marketing, and how can I incorporate it into my outreach strategy?
More and more, businesses, nonprofits, and other organizations are taking a more targeted approach to advertising. Before, these organizations might have tried to cast as wide a net as possible, using traditional mass media such as television, radio, and print advertisements to attempt to reach a far-flung audience.
But now, advanced marketing strategies and tools allow organizations to take a highly tailored marketing approach and deliver their digital content straight into the hands of those who are most likely to engage with it. Geofencing marketing is one of the most effective techniques available for doing just that.
In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about geofencing marketing, how it works, and how you can integrate it into your marketing strategy to achieve your goals. We’ll explore:
- What is Geofencing Marketing?
- AccuData Integrated Marketing’s Geofencing Products
- Where Can You Use Geofencing Marketing?
- Benefits of Using Geofencing Marketing
- Tips for Using Geofencing Marketing Effectively
Geofencing can be a great way to supplement your marketing strategy to create a well-rounded approach that builds strong relationships with your target audience and boosts conversions. But how do you know if it’s the right move for your organization? Read on to learn more!
What is Geofencing Marketing?
Geofencing marketing is a location-based advertising technique that allows marketers to connect with target audience members digitally.
A geofence is a virtual boundary surrounding a specific geographic location. Whenever a computer, smartphone, tablet, or laptop is identified within the geofence, the device is identified and tagged for advertising. Geofencing marketing involves sending digital advertisements to all of the connected devices within that boundary.
Geofencing marketing offers many different techniques for using this form of advertising. For example, AccuData Integrated Marketing’s Addressable GeoFence service uses your audience members’ home addresses to identify all connected devices within a network. Other forms of geofencing target mobile devices at a specific location, such as an event venue, to serve them ads.
Since geofencing tends to be a more advanced form of digital marketing, it’s recommended that you partner with a digital marketing firm to make the most of this method. These professionals have the expertise and background knowledge needed to carry out a geofencing strategy effectively.
AccuData Integrated Marketing’s Geofencing Products
Every digital marketing company has its own unique process for conducting geofencing marketing. Therefore, to explain in more detail how geofencing marketing works, it’s helpful to look through the lens of how one firm conducts its geofencing techniques.
Let’s dive into how AccuData Integrated Marketing helps organizations carry out their geofencing marketing activities. AccuData offers three major geofencing and geoframing services: Addressable GeoFence, Mobile GeoFence/GeoFollow, and Venue Replay.
Addressable GeoFence is AccuData’s service for reaching households or businesses in your target market.
This product uses innovative, cookie-free technology to match postal addresses with verified GPS and property plat line data to target the specific homes and businesses of your desired audience.
AccuData receives a 90% or greater match rate to postal files, meaning you can conduct highly precise online targeting. You can use this service to target:
- Existing loyalty or acquisition postal lists of audience members identified by your team
- Prospective audience members gathered by the AccuData team
- Customized audience lists based on demographic or geographic details
This is an effective way to transform your direct mail marketing audience into a digital audience as well to reach prospects across multiple platforms.
Mobile GeoFence/GeoFollow is ideal for marketers looking to target all of the individuals within a certain virtual boundary. These services identify devices within a boundary, allowing you to serve each individual highly relevant display ads on their smartphones. However, there are a few key differences between these two mobile-based targeting techniques.
Mobile GeoFence allows you to reach certain audience members within a boundary in real time. When an individual accesses the internet or starts an app session within the boundary, GPS data is used to identify their device and serve them relevant ads.
This technique is effective for reaching audience members at major events such as conferences, concerts, trade shows, hotels, sporting events, or a competitor’s location. This method is used only when audience members are present at your specified location.
You can continue connecting with target audience members after they’ve left the location using the Mobile GeoFollow service. GeoFollow uses beacon technology to continue enabling consumers’ phones to receive your ads for up to 30 days after their departure from your specified location.
This technology allows you to continue marketing to your target audience even after they’ve left a certain location, keeping your organization front of mind.
With Venue Replay, you can reach target audience members who have visited a specific location within a certain time frame, up to six months in the past. Venue Replay makes use of geoframing technology, which is slightly different from geofencing.
Geoframing uses coordinate data to identify the exact location of a certain event, creating a highly defined boundary. When people visit that location and use their devices, their device IDs are inventoried.
Then, AccuData takes your desired location and date range to identify your target audience. For instance, let’s say you want to market to all of the individuals who visited a competing business location in the past three months. AccuData will identify all of the individuals who align with these specifications. We will also identify each individual’s home IP address and other connected devices.
Then, your organization can start serving ads to not only the specified individuals, but also the other connected devices in their home network.
You can use Venue Replay to reach specific audiences like:
- Sports fans who attended a game at your local arena
- Music-lovers who attended a major concert or festival
- Conference-goers who attended events that are relevant to your organization or business
- Shoppers who visited a competitor’s store
Venue Replay allows you to connect with audience members and serve them digital ads that are highly relevant to their interests.
As you can see, there are a plethora of strategies for conducting geofencing marketing that range from targeting individuals at a specific place or event to reaching out to audience members months after they visited a certain location.
To find the right solution for your organization, contact us at AccuData today for more information about each of our offerings.
Where Can You Use Geofencing Marketing?
The aforementioned services can open your organization up to brand-new audiences and prospective customers that you may have struggled to reach in the past.
Depending on the type of geofencing marketing you use, you have the opportunity to reach audiences at all of the following locations and events:
- Sporting events
- Trade shows
- Competing locations
Many of these events, including trade shows, concerts, sporting events, and conferences, see thousands of participants each, representing a major boost in your advertising reach!
Benefits of Using Geofencing Marketing
Geofencing marketing technology constantly evolves to help marketers reach new audiences and connect on a deeper level with their current customers. The benefits of geofencing marketing are numerous, including:
- Improve local marketing efforts. Connect with your local community by using area events to market your (or your client’s) business. Services such as Mobile GeoFence or Venue Replay can help you access local audience members whom you may want to reach. For example, if you’re interested in expanding your business to a new location, you can reach audience members in that new area to start promoting your brand and raising awareness of your expansion.
- Reach your audience members across multiple touchpoints to build brand awareness and loyalty. In the nonprofit marketing world, it can take up to 18-20 different touchpoints to reach a new donor for the first time. In the for-profit sector, it takes an average of eight touches before prospective customers feel inclined to make a purchase. No matter the industry, geofencing marketing can help increase the number of touchpoints between your organization and its prospective audience members by supplementing your direct mail marketing with digital outreach.
- Connect with prospective audience members or customers using highly relevant and timely ads. Let’s say your business sells customized business card holders. Your local chamber of commerce is hosting a conference for community business leaders to mingle, share updates, and make connections. Who has a greater use for a business card holder than someone who attends business conferences? By using the Mobile GeoFence service, you can use digital ads to promote your business card holders to conference attendees, serving them a highly relevant ad that they’re more likely to actually click.
- Access detailed analytics. The geofencing process gives your organization access to a wealth of audience insights. For instance, with Mobile GeoFence/GeoFollow, you can track interactions with your digital ads and measure how many prospects convert from those ads. With Addressable GeoFence, you can gather individual data on audience members, such as identifying matched households. These details can help you determine how you’ll craft your future ad campaigns.
As you know, there are very few certainties in the world of marketing. Your ad campaigns may be partially (or entirely) based on educated guesses or hunches about what your audience prefers and is likely to engage with. With geofencing marketing, you can bring a stronger sense of certainty into your campaign planning by advertising to audience members that you know are more receptive to your content.
Tips for Using Geofencing Marketing Effectively
After reviewing all of the benefits, you may now be convinced that geofencing marketing is the right move for your strategy. At the same time, you want to know what you’re getting into to ensure that your investment in this technique will be worth it.
Several best practices will help you design the most effective geofencing marketing strategy, including:
Understand your target audience.
Before you launch your strategy, it’s important to understand exactly who you’re trying to target with your campaign. If you don’t know who your target audience is, you won’t be able to determine where to reach them with your geofencing techniques.
Whether you’re looking to connect with sports fans, nonprofit volunteers, conference-goers, shopaholics, or customers at a competing business, be sure to define your target audience. Then, you can identify the locations where you’re most likely to connect with these individuals.
Optimize your ad content.
After you’ve done all of the work to target prospects using geofencing, you don’t want to lose them simply because of poor ad copy. The ads that you send to your geofencing audience should be well-designed and compelling.
Choose an image that represents your business or mission and deploy your brand elements, such as your logo and color palette. Don’t forget to run a spelling and grammar check to make sure you’ve dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s.
It might also be good to up the ante of your digital advertising and try interactive or video ads for your geofencing campaigns.
Use a compelling call to action (CTA) to encourage engagement.
The end goal of your geofencing campaign isn’t to simply get ads in front of your audience members. You want those individuals to actually engage with your organization and take the next step, whether it’s visiting your website, viewing your product pages, signing up for a free demo, or purchasing your services. Therefore, your digital ads should include compelling CTAs that encourage audience members to click through.
Forget the generic “Click Here.” Depending on your organization’s goals, you might say “Sign Up for a Free Account Now,” “Book Your Free Walkthrough,” or “Access Your Free Sample.” As you can see, these examples incorporate another top insight — people love free stuff! Audience members will be much more willing to click your ad if they know they won’t immediately be thrown into a payment situation.
If you get stuck, just think about what would make you click on a digital display ad. When you decide to click on an ad, it’s probably because it has a special factor that drew you in. Whether it was an attractive product that you thought would enhance your daily life or a compelling free offer, think about the particular calls to action that make certain digital ads irresistible.
Track engagement data to assess progress.
How many people are clicking on your digital ads? How many individuals are visiting your business or using your online store because they saw your ad campaign and were intrigued? Track engagement data to assess the effectiveness of your geofencing efforts.
You can also use A/B testing to determine the success of different geofencing choices. For example, you can create two slightly different versions of the same ad and send them to different members within your overall target audience to assess which version is most effective. Or, you can adjust your geofencing parameters to market to different segments of your direct mail audience or different groups based on when they visited a certain location.
Keep your engagement tactics fresh and innovative to appeal to your audience members’ preferences.
Keep your data organized.
As you gather information on your audience members and ad campaigns, make sure you keep your insights organized and easily accessible. You may be storing customer data in your internal database or keeping records of your ad engagement metrics. Either way, it’s important to incorporate data hygiene best practices to keep this information organized.
These best practices include:
- Occasionally auditing your database to identify errors or mistakes, such as incorrect customer contact information.
- Standardizing your data entry procedures, such as numerical entries or street addresses.
- Designating one staff member to be your data czar and handle all data entry issues. This ensures at least one person is keeping tabs on your analytics and aware of all of the changes made to your database.
These strategies ensure that you’ll be able to use your database as a reference when planning future campaigns. You can assess the successes and failures of previous initiatives and determine the best path forward accordingly.
Work with a geofencing marketing specialist.
Geofencing marketing requires a certain level of finesse and experience to pull off successfully. If you don’t have a tech wizard on your team, it’s recommended that you work with a geofencing specialist to get the most out of your campaign.
Geofencing marketing experts (like AccuData Integrated Marketing!) offer the following services:
- Helping to identify your target market
- Managing your geofencing or geoframing campaign
- Working as an extension of your team to see your campaign through to the end
- Tracking data and campaign insights
Review this geofencing case study for a sense of how AccuData tackled the challenge of increasing sales at a well-known Arizona auto dealership using Addressable GeoFence technology. The dealer was able to capitalize on past relationships by identifying top prospects for returning customers.
For a customized geofencing marketing plan, reach out to us at AccuData today.
If your digital marketing efforts have hit a rut and you’re seeing less and less audience engagement, geofencing marketing might be the strategy you need to revamp your campaigns. You can reach your target audience members directly, meeting them where they are and serving them relevant information that resonates with their needs. Now, all that’s left to do is get started!
If you’re looking for more information on digital marketing techniques, explore these additional resources:
- Data Marketing: 4 Elements of a Successful Strategy. Data marketing takes the information you’ve learned about audience members to market to them more effectively. Learn more about this practice with this guide.
- Data Enhancement: What Is It (And Why Is It Important?). Is your audience database missing key information? Find out how data enhancement services can fill in the gaps.
- Digital Marketing: The Complete Guide for Your Team. A strong digital marketing strategy is necessary to stay ahead of the competition. Here’s everything you need to know to make your strategy successful.