Ibea­cons: The Rev­o­lu­tion­ary In­ven­tion Cre­ated by Ap­ple

ArabAd - - CONTENTS - BY: DR. GA­MAL MOKHTAR PRES­I­DENT/CEO AS­PECT-IN­TE­GRATED SO­LU­TIONS

What is the ibea­con?

It is the name of Ap­ple’s tech­nol­ogy stan­dard, which al­lows mo­bile apps (run­ning on both IOS and An­droid de­vices) to lis­ten for sig­nals from bea­cons in the phys­i­cal world and re­act ac­cord­ingly. This tech­nol­ogy al­lows mo­bile apps to un­der­stand their po­si­tion on a mi­cro-lo­cal scale and de­liver hy­per­con­tex­tual con­tent to users based on lo­ca­tion. By us­ing the BLE (Blue­tooth Low En­ergy) tech­nol­ogy, data is trans­mit­ted over short dis­tances. It’s de­signed for low en­ergy con­sump­tion and cost, while main­tain­ing a com­mu­ni­ca­tion range sim­i­lar to that of its pre­de­ces­sor: clas­sic Blue­tooth.

ibea­con is ex­tremely more ac­cu­rate than GPS es­pe­cially in­door but does not cover large ar­eas like GPS and Wifi.

With ibea­con, Ap­ple has stan­dard­ised the for­mat for BLE advertising.

Why is ibea­con a big deal?

With an ibea­con net­work, any brand, re­tailer, app, or plat­form will be able to un­der­stand ex­actly where a cus­tomer is in the brick and mor­tar en­vi­ron­ment. This pro­vides an op­por­tu­nity to send customers highly con­tex­tual, hy­per-lo­cal, mean­ing­ful mes­sages and ad­ver­tise­ments (stills and videos) to their smart­phones.

The typ­i­cal sce­nario is: A con­sumer car­ry­ing a smart­phone walks into a store. Apps in­stalled on a con­sumer’s smart­phone lis­ten for ibea­cons. When an app hears an ibea­con, it com­mu­ni­cates the rel­e­vant data to its server, which then trig­gers an ac­tion.

This could be some­thing as sim­ple as a push mes­sage [“Wel­come to “BON­JOUR”! – “Check out Dori­tos on Aisle 3!”], and could in­clude other things like tar­geted ad­ver­tise­ments, spe­cial of­fers, and help­ful re­minders [“You’re out of Milk!”].

Other po­ten­tial ap­pli­ca­tions in­clude mo­bile pay­ments and shop­per an­a­lyt­ics

As ev­ery­thing we know in many as­pects is dra­mat­i­cally chang­ing to “some­thing to­tally new” Ap­ple came up with this rev­o­lu­tion­ary in­ven­tion to change mar­ket­ing/advertising as we know it.

and im­ple­men­ta­tion out­side of re­tail, at air­ports, con­cert venues, theme parks, hos­pi­tals, mu­se­ums, cine­mas, uni­ver­si­ties and more. The po­ten­tial is lim­it­less.

This tech­nol­ogy should bring about a par­a­digm shift in the way brands com­mu­ni­cate with con­sumers. ibea­con pro­vides a dig­i­tal ex­ten­sion into the phys­i­cal world. It would be exciting to see how this tech­nol­ogy grows in the next few years.

Customers have evolved.

It’s time for mar­keters to catch up. To­day’s ul­tra-con­nected con­sumers are in­ter­act­ing with brands in more places than ever and more of­ten as well. The av­er­age cus­tomer comes in con­tact with a brand at least five times be­fore buy­ing whether it’s a Google search, an in-store visit or down­load­ing an app ...etc. It’s all the same for customers.

Mar­ket­ing ex­pe­ri­ences are mashups that blend seam­lessly to­gether. And mo­bil­ity is at the fore­front of it all, with mo­bile de­vices and wear­able tech­nolo­gies in­creas­ingly blur­ring the lines be­tween our dig­i­tal and phys­i­cal worlds.

Smart­phones have be­come con­stant shop­ping com­pan­ions – with 84% of mo­bile shop­pers– now us­ing their phones to help with shop­ping in phys­i­cal stores. M.A.R.C. Re­search with the Google Shop­per Coun­cil found that shop­pers who use their mo­biles more ac­tu­ally spend more in store

How ibea­con can greatly im­pact the shop­ping ex­pe­ri­ence?

By de­liv­er­ing shop­pers with highly rel­e­vant in­for­ma­tion based on what they cur­rently browse for in-store, you can di­rectly in­flu­ence shop­pers at the point of de­ci­sion.

The same ex­am­ple can be ap­plied in a hos­pi­tal, café, restau­rant, ex­po­si­tion, mu­seum, gro­cery store, air­port, uni­ver­sity and con­certs.

ibea­con can also be used for se­cu­rity pur­poses; It can se­cure a whole place like a school, uni­ver­sity…

It can in­te­grate with all the wear­able de­vices; Ap­ple Watch, Sam­sung, Mo­torola…

Smart­phones are chang­ing the in-store ex­pe­ri­ence, and win­ning the key de­ci­sion mo­ments at the phys­i­cal shelves means own­ing the dig­i­tal shelves too… - Google

We can use the BLE band to track chil­dren or stu­dents. Form­ing what is called a safe cam­pus or school. Through BLE a girl can im­me­di­ately con­tact se­cu­rity if some­thing wrong hap­pened to her.

ibea­con can also work in par­al­lel with Wifi on the same plat­form.

Some of the places that use ibea­con: - Heathrow Air­port UK - Macy’s stores USA - Nike stores UK - Car­refour Paris - Miami Air­port USA

When ibea­con is used with a Cam­paign Man­age­ment Sys­tem (CMS), it means that not only will com­pa­nies can have com­plete con­trol over the in­for­ma­tion they de­liver in their zone, but can also change it on the fly or even split test dif­fer­ent cam­paigns.

The re­ports mo­d­ule in the Cam­paign Man­age­ment Sys­tem pro­vide in­cred­i­ble insight not only to a com­pany’s cam­paigns, but also shop­per move­ments and en­gage­ments.

With the abil­ity to drive store traf­fic, in­crease shop­per en­gage­ment and di­rectly in­flu­ence pur­chasers at their crit­i­cal de­ci­sion; ibea­con can pro­vide a win­ning mo­bile mar­ket­ing strat­egy.

The ibea­con so­lu­tion is con­sid­ered to be: ON the LINE.

In advertising and mar­ket­ing: It’s all about con­nect­ing the dots be­tween online be­hav­iour and off­line in­ter­ac­tions/ pur­chases. We fi­nally can close the loop and un­der­stand how dig­i­tal and off­line be­hav­iour work to­gether.

ibea­con works closely with com­pa­nies to de­velop and im­ple­ment dig­i­tal strate­gies that de­liver against key business ob­jec­tives while en­sur­ing that all el­e­ments of dig­i­tal and non-dig­i­tal work to­gether to drive ef­fi­cient clients. The right user gets the right tech­nol­ogy at the right time.

Fur­ther­more, ibea­con:

Al­lows for bet­ter mea­sure­ments as it can de­liver re­ports with KPI’S tai­loured to drive clients with an ideal business out­come.

Pro­vides clients with wider in­ter­pre­ta­tions for social val­ues, tra­di­tions, per­cep­tions and prac­tices.

Pro­vides clients with a deeper look into the lives of their con­sumers (habits, at­ti­tudes, needs…) while track­ing all these de­tails.

More added value to advertising agen­cies:

- Com­pa­nies can test their cam­paigns be­fore spend­ing mil­lions.

- Com­pa­nies can en­gage with real

customers in more ac­cu­rate way.

- Com­pa­nies can con­duct ded­i­cated low­cost advertising cam­paigns.

- Group events, games, com­pe­ti­tions and fo­rums.

- Agen­cies can cre­ate more apps for their clients.

- Agen­cies can in­te­grate ibea­cons with new tech­nolo­gies like vir­tual/aug­mented re­al­ity and holo­grams.

Now mar­keters can fig­ure out when they should show an ad to a shop­per and have the big­gest im­pact.

ibea­con de­fines the shop­ping of to­mor­row

With the daily wide­spread of ibea­con and its end­less pos­si­bil­i­ties: the advertising, PR and mar­ket­ing in­dus­tries will ex­ten­sively trans­form into some­thing en­tirely more ad­vanced than ever be­fore. More­over, the in­te­gra­tion with other new in­ven­tions – such as: IPTV, IP Tele­phones and Dig­i­tal Sig­nage – will lead mar­ket­ing and advertising to some­thing never ex­pected. Agen­cies must be fast in cop­ing with those dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tions, else risk their en­tire op­er­a­tion.

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