On the Ground and in the Cloud: Geofencing and Cloud Computing
Statista reports that 4.57 billion people are active Internet users, making up almost 60% of the entire world’s population. More than just impacting our daily lives, going digital has been at the heart of millions of innovations in hundreds of industries around the world. The landscape of business is completely different from where it was ten, or even five years ago.
The digital revolution has created new tools and new opportunities for business people from all walks of life. That revolution is probably best seen in the field of marketing. In our previous article ‘Uses of Cloud Computing in Marketing‘, we talked about the many ways cloud computing has pushed marketing to newer and greater heights. Today, we’re going to go into the specifics of a new tool, and what it has to do with cloud computing. That tool is geofencing.
What Geofencing Can Do
While not exactly the newest technique on the block, geofencing is made possible because of smartphone technology. A post on geofencing by Triadex Services describes the process as follows: customers who enter a geofenced area share their public device data. Some examples of a possible geofenced area include your physical store, a competitor’s store, or the surrounding area.
If the customer has a compatible device, once they enter a geofenced area, they’re shown banner advertisements. These ads are displayed on popular sites, and are triggered to display precisely because the customer is within a certain location. Geofencing thus makes use of physical location to target customers and more efficiently and effectively display relevant ads.
Geo and the Cloud
Geofencing, like many marketing techniques, stores and makes use of public data on the cloud. When it comes to personal data like location, consumer, and customer privacy has always been a concern. In fact, ComputerWeekly reports that security concerns are one of the biggest barriers to cloud computing adoption, sitting at 93% among cybersecurity professionals.
While these security concerns are pertinent, marketers and businesses can rest assured. Geofencing makes use of publicly available data enabled by customers, so in general security concerns about data aren’t as scary. Overall, however, businesses should make use of the cloud from service providers they trust, as being cautious about information is always beneficial.
When to Use Geofencing
One of the greatest benefits of geofencing is that it can put small businesses on an even playing field with larger ones. According to SFGate, location-based marketing tools like geofencing result in higher click-through rates on advertisements than other techniques. In fact, some research shows that geofencing can sometimes be up to 20 times more effective than regular digital advertising.
You should use geofencing if you’re a business with a physical store that’s looking to increase foot traffic. Because geofencing allows you to display relevant ads on customers’ phones when they enter a certain area, you can ensure that your ads direct customers right to your store.
Geofencing is also a great idea if you want to test the effectiveness of specific campaigns. Displaying a specific, targeted ad and then matching up that data to how many customers entered your store is a great way to measure campaigns. The technique is great for any type of business from restaurants to retail to even local tourism.
Affordable, relevant, and highly effective, geofencing is a marketing tool that every business with a physical store should have in their arsenal. With geofencing, you can ensure that customers are getting your ads at the best possible time — when they’re merely steps away from your front door. And, as with anything, cloud computing is one of the best ways to help make that happen.