Starbucks trials new O2 location-based mobile marketing service

Starbucks: to deliver targeted location-based ads to O2 customers
Starbucks: to deliver targeted location-based ads to O2 customers

Starbucks and L'Oréal are to deliver highly targeted location-based ads via SMS and MMS to O2 customers, using its new mobile ad service.

The location-based mobile marketing service, which is trialling in the UK for six months, will enable retailers and brands to send ads to mobiles to over one million of O2 Media's opted in customers.

The service uses geo-fencing technology that automatically triggers an ad to be sent to a mobile device when its user enters a certain location detected by proximity to mobile towers.
 
Customers who opt in give details of their age, gender and interests. This information is combined with the customer’s location, meaning that brands are able to deliver relevant ads.

When opted-in O2 More customers are enter a geo-fenced area 'owned' by Starbucks, and they have registered an interest in food and drink, they will receive an SMS offering them money off at a nearby branch of Starbucks.

Customers interested in beauty found to be within L’Oréal's geo-fenced areas will receive an SMS offering buy one get one free on L’Oréal Elvive hair care range at Superdrug

O2 said that such a service does not infringe its customers' privacy because it is opt-in and they make the opportunity to opt out obvious for them. It does not send spam, only messages that are relevant to the customers' registered interests.

It differs from the likes of Foursquare as it does not require a smartphone or app to work.

In the US O2 Media partnered with Californian-based mobile technology company Placecast to deliver this service. It claimed that 65% of customers who were part of initial programmes made a purchase as a result of receiving an ad via SMS and MMS.

Last month O2 announced it is to launch its first mobile healthcare service, as part of its strategy to develop into a brand-led service business.

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