As if mobile advertising wasn’t enough to promptly reach the smartphone user on the go, now enter location-based advertising; the next innovation in mobile advertising. In an attempt to inform, remind, or inspire consumers, advertisers can now reach their audience by offering them on the spot, real-time coupons and deals. Imagine driving along as your phone suddenly vibrates in your lap. You glance down, as a “Buy-one-get-one free Domino’s Pizza slice” ad pops up on your screen. This ad alone is enough to strike interest in any somewhat hungry, pizza enthusiast. Now, imagine that the ad says “One mile ahead, on the left”. You now not only have the thought of a slice of Domino’s pizza lingering on your mind, but you also have a monetary initiative, as well as the knowledge of the exact location of where and how soon this pizza can be yours. Until smart phones come up with the technology to send pizza-scented wafts of air to the noses of the consumer, we can’t think of a bolder and more accessible way to offer promotions
Several different platforms prove to us that location-based marketing isn’t all a push by advertisers. With Google Latitude, smart phone users choose to have their whereabouts automatically uploaded to Google Maps for their contact’s own viewing pleasure. Applications such as Yelp, Gowalla, and Foursquare have similar functions. Google’s AdMob and Apple’s iAd Platform deliver retail-specific deals to consumers while they are already shopping in-store.
Is this almost eerily pertinent advertising form intrusive? Some wonder. Yes, it may initially give off somewhat of a “big brother is watching” feel, this on-site promotional push. But the next time you’ve got an empty stomach, and can get a great deal on a nearby pizza joint, I say “bring it on!”