Ibeacons: The Revolutionary Invention Created by Apple
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.
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.