“Location Intelligence”, geolocation at the service of customer experience

A tool to better comprehend the context around customers' uses

in brief

Using geolocation data to better understand the context in which consumers operate is what consulting firms like Shyhook or Deloitte offer, thanks in particular to the progress made in the collection and analysis of these data.

“Data is the new black oil”, but in the run for collecting and decrypting data, we tend to forget those of geolocation. This is because they are often associated to the simple longitude/latitude couple. But the technology has since evolved, and now allows to establish a context around the uses of customers. Thus, the intersection of billions of smartphones with their multiple geolocations (from airports to stadiums, to university campuses or even coffee shops) opens the way for a marriage between client intelligence and mobile advertising targeting.

Today, brand can easily determine when a customer is in one of its physical or online store, but it represents only a fraction of this customer’s day. Understanding in which geographical context he evolves means better understanding his uses and the activities he likes, beyond your brand. The geolocation technology has now evolved enough to let brands go beyond the simple geo-targeted message, and thus learn more about the client: understanding who he is, what he likes, where he goes, how he likes to spend his time, in order to conceive better targeted marketing campaigns.

The consulting firm Skyhook has, for example, realized a study for a premium clothing brand: by identifying customers visiting the stores and analyzing the data, the brand could compare these data to those of an extended panel of 50 millions smartphones. It resulted that these customers had ten times more chances of resorting yoga studios, sports clubs and premium athleisure stores.

Avoiding drifts

That being said, it is a practice that has special rules. This can only be efficient if customers accept to share their data with the brand. To do so, the customer should be approached from the beginning of their engagement with the brand, with a request for permission to use their geolocation data.

Depending on the applications, but especially on the level of trust a customer has in a given brand, the permission rate varies enormously. What is important is to understand that the customer will know what his data will be used for, according to the type of brand. It will be much easier for a customer to give permission to a hotel group’s loyalty application than to a social network, for which they will be less able to grasp what their data will be used for. It is therefore essential that the customer easily understands what value he will get in exchange for his data. Whether in terms of customer experience, or simply in the form of discounts or preferential benefits.

This post was written in partnership with DEFI France, as part of its support to innovation and fashion companies.

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