Geo-targeting Is More Specific

Posted on Dec 20 2013 - 10:17am by Michael Smith


There used to be an old saying often repeated in advertising and marketing: “I know half of my marketing and advertising budget is working, I just don’t know which half.”  Those days are long gone with the rise of Internet and mobile marketing, which are highly measurable mediums.

A new problem has presented itself and that is you still don’t know why your marketing and advertising worked or why it did not work for certain products and services, or certain segments of your target demographic.  Those answers lie in having a conversation, or direct and immediate feedback from the customer. National brands are starting to think about how to achieve this with location based market research.

To tap into consumers’ behavior more closely, -targeting, often also referred to as location based targeting has become widely used. Now that the general public has become more comfortable with making their locations available, most everyone has their smartphone opted in to location-based and GPS-supported apps and services. The question now lies, how does a brick and mortar business tap into the flood of potential sales walking in and out each day?

Thanks to a new generation of technological development, there is a gold mine waiting for the businesses that find the right formula.  Apps can send shoppers right to addresses you are looking to study.  Or, for those who are just going about their day, apps can detect when the kind of consumer who likes what you sell is within 30 feet of your front door, inside your premises, or just leaving. Very soon, developers will shorten that distance to 30 inches.

There are three key trends emerging in the area of geo-targeting that are making it more specific than eve. These areas are also making it and more attractive, measureable and lucrative Geo-precision

  1. Geo-Precision
  2. Geo-Fencing
  3. Geo-Conquesting


Geo-precision goes beyond just targeting a known geographical location to being hyper specific to a targeted and relatively small area within a certain geographical location.  So, for example, a geo-precise targeted location might be the 15 feet of sidewalk down the block of a particular shopping district.


Geo-Fencing sounds similar to geo-precision but covers a wider expanse of area and is a “virtual fence” designed to enclose a specific area for a marketing purpose. For example, a company can run a geo-fencing campaign where they “fence” in their stores with nearby competitive stores so that whenever their targeted demographic was shopping in the store they receive a mobile survey. This way they can capture opinions of both their shoppers and shoppers of competitive stores as well.


Geo-Conquesting is the new version of being a gladiator—in business anyway.  This specific method of geo-targeting allows businesses to use a consumer’s current or past competitor interest, purchases and visits to trigger an offer to them once they are in the vicinity of the targeting brand and the formerly visited competitor.  The targeting brand then provides information and offers that lure the customer away from the competitor and to their front door.

With these three tips and a bit more knowledge of the new and very specific ways of geo-targeting your target demographic, you can begin to think about and take action on ways to put specific Geo-Targeting to work for you!

Photo Credit: Wikimedia/Nachoman-au

About the Author

Written by Michael Smith, Director of Panel & Senior Mobile Research Specialist at MFour. As the curator of MFour’s Surveys on the Go mobile-only panel, Michael continually provides researchers and companies with unparalleled access to the mobile consumer.