For brick and mortar retail shops, the biggest challenge right now is actually getting foot traffic in their stores.
Earlier this week, The New York Times reported that retailer North Face is attempting to bring people into their stores by sending them text messages when they get near their retail outlets. That technology, called ShopAlerts, is powered by location-based advertising startup Placecast and is launching today as a full-fledged marketing service for retailers.
Here’s how ShopAlerts works. Consumers can opt-in to receiving text messages in a variety of ways—at the store, online, via text-message, mobile websites or on Facebook. Once the technology has been activated, consumers will be alerted when they are near a location that they are interested in or when the brand is offering sales and specials. ShopAlerts’ technology uses “geo-fences,” which are virtual boundaries that can be targeted via location-based marketing. Retailers can customize alerts to fit their brand and strategy. On the consumer side, ShopAlerts will only send maximum number of 3 messages within a given week from a retailer. And users can opt out of the program by texting “stop” back to a text message.
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