When most marketers use the word ‘data’, what springs to mind are large sets of numbers, Excel spreadsheets, cloud-based IT systems and complicated algorithms. Big data speak is the mot du jour. There is even a big data Week in London called the Festival of Data.
Adshel is rolling out more than 3000 beacons across its national out-of-home advertising network in a bid to bring stronger customer targeting and data capabilities to the outdoor advertising space.
The company said the beacons will initially be used as ‘listen and learn’ devices to build insights on consumers, as well as for advertisers.
Longer term, Adshel hopes the technology will allow advertisers to leverage their existing customer databases to send geo-targeted and contextually relevant messages to customers standing within the vicinity of an enabled Adshel panel.
The data generated through the beacons could also be used by advertisers to profile Adshel’s outdoor sites, gaining further geographic insights into a specific location and improving audience targeting. The beacons will only work with an advertiser’s beacon-enabled app installed on a consumer’s iOS or Android smartphone. The network is expected to be operating by 1 April.
Adshel CEO, Rob Atkinson, saw the beacon rollout as transforming the way outdoor media is bought and sold.
“In combination with Adshel’s almost 15,000 advertising panels, it will deliver advertisers more data, insights and accountability while utilising the unique engagement small format outdoor advertising offers,” he said.
“We want to continue working with our advertising partners in ways that deliver more effective campaign planning and reduced media spend wastage. We believe our beacons offering further demonstrates our commitment to innovation.”
Adshel’s chief commercial officer Mike Tyquin said the company had tested beacons in a number of out-of-home locations as part of its initial ‘Listen and Learn’ network offering.
“The launch of Adshel’s beacon network is in response to advertisers’ demands for mobile extensions of their advertising campaigns and demonstrates our relentless focus on being a market leader in the OOH data space,” he told CMO.
Tyquin explained Adshel offers advertisers access to its beacon network in advance of planned media campaigns to understand where their customers are and aren’t.
“Adshel’s beacon network will inform agencies and advertisers which Adshel OOH advertising panels are the best to buy to meet their campaign objectives,” he said.
Key benefits for advertisers in the first phase of the beacon offering include targeting more accurately, reducing media spend wastage and increasing campaign ROI, he said.
Under phase two, advertisers will then have the opportunity to send personalised mobile push notifications to a consumer’s mobile devices, and can couple existing customer insights with specific location and time around specific customers, Tyquin said.
Beacons are already proving a hot ticket item in the retail space as a way of better connecting digital and physical customer experiences.
A number of Australian retailers and retail shopping centres claim to be successfully trialling the technology, including Woolworths for its click-and-collect service; Bendigo Marketplace for family-oriented marketing campaigns; and Chatswood Chase for offers and customer data collection.
Globally, the proximity marketing devices are also being used by the likes of John Lewis, Home Depot, Macy’s and Apple stores.
The CEO of APN News & Media, which jointly owns Adshel, expected the beacons to change the conversation around outdoor advertising accountability.
“Internationally, beacons have proved their effectiveness in marketing campaigns and we can expect them to similarly deliver success locally for advertisers utilising Adshel’s leading small format outdoor network,” Michael Miller said.
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