18
Sep
2018

The Future of Location-Based Marketing

09/18/2018

Targeting the right person with the right ad at the right time—it’s the holy grail of location-based marketing, and with Simpli.fi we are closer than ever before to achieving it. Location-based marketing has come so far over the years, and Simpli.fi is excited to be a pioneer in pushing the industry forward. In order to fully understand the capabilities that exist today, one must first understand how we got here. Let’s take a look at where location-based marketing began and how far we’ve come so you too can reach the coveted goal of true one-on-one marketing!
 

The Early Ages: An Audience of Millions

Imagine it’s the early-2000’s, and you’re a marketer at an auto dealership located in a large metropolitan area. Your goal is to serve ads to potential customers at as close to the local level as possible. At this stage in time, the best option available is to target an audience based on a Designated Market Area (DMA). Might not sound too bad since you can at least hit certain areas of the country, but with only 210 DMAs in the U.S. how granular can you truly get?

Let’s say you launch an ad campaign targeted at individuals who live within the DMA where your dealership is located. Your goal is to bring people into your dealership who are interested in buying a new car. The average population of a DMA is around 1.5 million people, and since you’re in a big city, the number is likely even higher than that. This is only a step down from targeting nationally—hardly ideal for a local business, and yet it’s the best you could do at the time. For example, while an individual might be in the same DMA as your dealership, they may live 50 miles and an hour’s drive away, with multiple other car sellers in-between. While your ads will likely reach your target audience, they will also be served to thousands (if not millions) of people who may never be in the proximity to buy a car from you. Targeting over such a large area results in wasted impressions and less ROI.
 

Narrowing It Down Further

Fast-forward a few years. There have been some advancements in location-based marketing, and you can now target potential customers based on Zip Codes. Whether they are Zip Codes of areas surrounding your dealership, or areas that index towards certain demographics in your target market, the targeting capabilities are still only as granular as the Zip Code level.

While this is certainly an improvement over DMAs, it is still targeting over a fairly wide area. The average zip code contains approximately 10,000 people, and encompasses around 90 square miles. Since your goal is to serve ads to people within a reasonable driving distance of your dealership, zip code-based targeting is still a bit too broad.
 

Geo-Targeting Gets Even Closer

Targeting got even narrower with the introduction of Geo-Fencing, a revolution in location-based targeting. Geo-fencing allows you to serve digital ads to mobile users seen within a predefined geographic area. With this advancement, you can now narrow the field even further and geo-fence a specific business, like a local competitor’s lot or the neighborhoods surrounding your dealership. This is a true home run for marketers in location-based targeting, and to this day is still a great way for you to reach a local audience.

With Simpli.fi’s Geo-Fencing product suite, advertisers can own their geo with the most accurate and advanced location-based mobile advertising technology on the market today. Simpli.fi utilizes actual latitude and longitude coordinates for unprecedented accuracy, and our use of unstructured data allows us to draw target fences using custom shapes and sizes rather than pulling users from a grid or utilizing radius targeting. This translates to greater precision and less wasted impressions.

Geo-targeting became even more sophisticated with the introduction of Simpli.fi’s Conversion Zones. Our Conversion Zone technology is designed to track online-to-offline conversions and provide foot traffic attribution so you’ll know whether your campaigns are driving visits.
 

The Future is Now

Today, location-based marketing has reached a new level that would have been hard to imagine a decade ago. Thanks to Simpli.fi’s Addressable Geo-Fencing technology, you can now precisely target at the household level, at scale, across all devices. This is another huge step forward towards the goal of one-on-one targeting.

The ability to target at the individual address-level introduces a whole new realm of possibilities for your ad campaigns. Keeping with the above auto example, say you have an address list of customers whose leases are coming up on renewal. With Simpli.fi’s Addressable Geo-Fencing, each household can be targeted with digital ads that are relevant to your dealership and inventory. Another use case would be targeting the addresses of customers who have purchased a car from your dealership over five years ago. Isn’t it time you served them ads centered around buying a new car?

Addressable Geo-Fencing allows you to target those specific households that fit your target market. By using GPS and plat line data for the utmost precision, geo-fences are drawn around a specific physical address allowing marketers to serve mobile, video, and/or OTT/CTV ads to users within the targeted household or business. No more wasted impression targeting certain DMAs, Zip Codes, or relevant surrounding neighborhoods in proximity to your business. Hit the right person with the right ad at the right time with Simpli.fi’s Addressable Geo-Fencing!

And it doesn’t stop there. You can also layer in the aforementioned Conversion Zone technology for foot traffic attribution and gain valuable insights into the success of your campaign. Check out our Addressable Geo-Fencing page to learn more about how it works.

It is evident that location-based marketing has come a long way. From audiences of millions, we can now target down to a single household. Thanks to Simpli.fi, the future of local is now.