iOS7 has undeniably changed the face of mobile operating systems. We’ve seen finger print scanners, flat design and improved usability all take the forefront of Apple’s most recent keynote. But, one of the lesser known features (quickly glossed over at the Worldwide Developers Conference 2013) is support for something called iBeacons.
iBeacons is a new initiative from Apple that uses Bluetooth to communicate with other devices, such as an iPhone or Android device, without the need for Wi-Fi.
But, why is it so special?
Previous attempts at near field communications have relied on push messaging, meaning Bluetooth broadcasts could not be tailored to individuals. If you’ve ever left your Bluetooth on and been hit by random offers, you’ll know how quickly you’ve taken to switching it off.
With, iBeacons, you can incorporate this push messaging with branded apps, therefore targeting the existing customers with tailored messaging. The potential is far reaching in that, through encouraging footfall, offering personalised discounts, enable contextual marketing, automate check-ins and much more as the marketplace develops in the future.
And, despite it being a new technology, we’re discovering there is very little in the way of barriers to entry, it’s been available to developers for a little longer and companies like Estimote are already making beacons available for pre-order.
The benefits of iBeacons are vast, but we’ve picked out a few key features:
1. They increase footfall – as an organisation or brand you can entice people in to a store or space by offering them relevant and targeted marketing messages directly to their handset.
2. It’s data driven – You have a way of understanding your customer before they even walk through the door, meaning you can tailor the entire experience based purely around them and their interests.
3. It’s doesn’t require huge investment – Bluetooth adapters exist and are inexpensive, whilst the consumer already has the technology in their pockets.
We’re already working on ways to make this technology work, so if you’d like to learn more about iBeacons and the power of location based marketing, download this document or give us a call.