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

What happens when the 'market' becomes a 'customer'?

One of the insightful things that has been said to me recently came from an independent consultant working at a major FMCG client. He said: “The problem here is that we have some people who are world-class at marketing to the masses, but they haven’t got a clue about how to speak to a customer.”

3 Metrics to measure B2B content marketing ROI

Content marketing has become a key pillar for marketing departments of all sizes across the world. But how do you measure – and ultimately prove – the effectiveness of the time, money and energy spent on content marketing?

How global brands can connect on a local level

The dot-com boom allowed brands to easily access the global market. Thanks to this increased exposure and worldwide awareness, brands can no longer exist in a local bubble.

Dan Ratner

managing director, Uberbrand

Informative comments , I loved the info , Does anyone know if my assistant could get ahold of a blank 2011 IRS 8804 - Schedule A document...


Telstra unveils fresh digital content media services

Read more

So, the one thing I would say is .. the customer already has a voice, whether you wanted them to have one or not .. and they have a platf...

Paul Gilbert

Why digital strategy equals customer experience

Read more

Appliances online are doing a good job online, but they're still not giving customers a truly powerful online experience in my view. Wher...

Graham Howlett

Navigating the future of omni-channel retailing

Read more

For both businesses and marketers alike who want a digital marketing platform that supports data visualization, integrated analytics and ...


Adobe to bolster analytics capabilities of Marketing Cloud with Digital Analytix acquisition

Read more

Good Content is a crucial part in Marketing ROI. No doubt metrics like sharing & engagement, consumption, & lead generation &...


3 Metrics to measure B2B content marketing ROI - B2B marketing - CMO Australia

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in