Purple WiFi lets businesses trade free wireless for valuable customer data

New service offers to help businesses provide free Wi-Fi in exchange for invaluable social marketing.

Thanks to McDonald's and Starbucks, free wireless networking is available every 200 yards or so, at least in metropolitan areas of the United States. Still, many merchants--especially smaller "mom & pop" establishments--don't provide the service. Purple WiFi has a business model that can help these businesses offer free Wi-Fi, and seems like a win-win for both the business and the customers.

Purple Wifi offers software that works with a business' existing broadband connection to provide free Wi-Fi network access for customers. Because users are required to sign-in using a social account, the business gets access to valuable social demographic data, such as the age and gender of customers that use Purple WiFi, when users connect, how long they stay connected, and more.

Purple Wifi also give the business an opportunity to expand their social reach. Upon login, the customer is prompted to "like" the business' Facebook page or follow its Twitter account. According to data shared by Purple WiFi, 87 percent of people make purchasing decisions based on input from friends. They claim that the average Facebook user has 190 friends, and that the monetary value of a single "Like" on Facebook amounts to 85 pounds (about $135 USD).

Purple WiFi offers a few different plans. The base plan is free, but for about $40 per month a business can subscribe to Purple WiFi Premium, which includes custom branding, email and coupon marketing options, content filtering, and deeper demographic information. Remember, though, that the Purple WiFi costs are in addition to whatever you pay for the Internet service itself, and do not include the wireless router hardware.

Currently Purple Wifi works with Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, but it promises to add Google+, Pinterest, and others in the near future. There is an option for customers who don't have a social network account to fill out a short registration form.

In general, more businesses should provide free Wi-Fi. It's a gesture of good will that creates added value in the eyes of the customer even for people who don't use it. Most businesses already have an Internet connection, and a wireless network even if they only use it for employees and official company business. Why not use a service like Purple WiFi to share the network with customers in exchange for free marketing and invaluable customer demographic data?

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

How to keep your B2B marketing job for the next 5 years

B2B marketers are in the hot seat. As the customers’ buying journey shifts online, B2B marketers must exert influence and build trust with their prospects in a new way.

Collective Intelligence: The power of smarter, quicker team thinking

When we think about the bottom line in business, the immediate jump is fiscal performance. But if you're serious about future-proofing your business, then you need to be ready to think outside the box of traditional success measures.

Janine Garner

Founder and CEO, LBDGroup and author

Can the data-led creative please stand up?

The data land grab is full steam ahead. Media agencies, brands and tech players are all scrambling over one another to develop data and insights capabilities and to own the space.

Great article. Interactive videos will be the next big thing for engaging B2B & B2C audiences. IV videos with a questionnaire style f...

Revolution Video

3 lessons for marketers from the most creative digital ads for 2015

Read more

Chris, nice collection of tactics. I believe these are valid points of focus and action, and most marketers and many sales professionals ...

BCA

How to keep your B2B marketing job for the next 5 years - Marketing leadership - CMO Australia

Read more

The most successful start of any change is the recognition of its need. Australia is by no means the only country struggling with custome...

Denyse Drummond-Dunn

Report: Aussie CMOs strive for customer centricity but hindered by pace of change

Read more

Chris - good list for a staff marketer. But a CMO must become conversant and familiar with strategic corporate finance. This is now a c...

Ed Marsh

How to keep your B2B marketing job for the next 5 years - Marketing leadership - CMO Australia

Read more

Hmm ... another pondering example of VR technology's use for place-teleportation.http://www.virtualrealitytimes...

VirtualReality Times

Virtual reality provides platform to showcase Brisbane winter experiences

Read more

Sign in