Ian James, GM, International, Verve looks at how consumers feel about sharing location information and why this is significant for publishers and advertisers.
A fascinating insight from a recent research report we commissioned was that more than half of consumers actually feel more comfortable sharing their mobile’s location with an app, compared to two years ago.
In a world where we are all becoming increasingly privacy-conscious when it comes to our data, it appears that attitudes to sharing location may be bucking the trend, as long as certain conditions are upheld. More on these conditions later.
This is good news for app publishers. It means access to even more valuable insights that advertisers will pay a premium for. With a mobile app, publishers are able to track movements and behaviours – this includes where users go, what they do, their interests and habits – all of which can be collected anonymously, without compromising privacy, by working with the consumer in secure, trusted environments, whilst displaying transparent dialogues.
This all adds up to intrinsically valuable insights for advertisers and builds high quality and predefined audiences.
Having access to accurate and precise location gives brands across the board the chance to get really creative with location-based campaigns. Advertisers no longer have to be concerned about whether they have the right data and, in turn, whether or not they have a good amount of insights on their target audience. Data derived from the device, means they are able to serve more relevant and timely campaigns to their desired customers.
These campaigns translate into more enticing experiences for consumers which drive engagement and ultimately result in success for the brand. It is the not-so-secret ingredient that transforms a standard mobile campaign into an award-winning showcase of what brands can do.
However, gaining and keeping consumer permission around location is highly dependent on a number of factors.
First, 8 in 10 people say that in order for them to share their phone’s location, it’s important the brand behind the app service is known and trustworthy. This is good news for household brands which have app interfaces – they have spent many years cultivating consumer trust. Those well-known brands – be they media, entertainment or even services like gyms – that don’t yet have a mobile app might consider the value of investing in one.
Second, over half of consumers say that in order to give access to their location, it is very important they know their information is securely stored, they have control over when it is used and that information collected is anonymised and not directly linked to their personal identity. It is surprising just how many app publishers don’t make their policy around this clear and easily accessible. Making this information transparent, could give more users the confidence to share their phone’s location.
Third, if publishers choose to monetise data by serving location-based ads within their apps, they need to make sure they are accurately targeted. Our research found that over a third of consumers (34%) remove an app if they receive poorly targeted ads based on inaccurate location information.
Thinking carefully about these factors should come naturally to publishers – after all, most publishers I know are rightly obsessed with protecting the user experience. In addition, the implementation of GDPR means they’ll already have to take action on how data is used and stored and how they communicate this to their audiences.
If the industry follows these steps, location-based marketing will reach its full potential. What exactly does this ‘potential’ look like? Brands using smart creative powered by location-based insights, to reach the consumer in a trusted environment.
By Ian James