Geofencing push notifications, are sent in real-time when a user approaches or leaves a specific location (like a physical store). In other words, geo-push gets you as close to 1:1 marketing as possible. But with great power, comes great responsibility. There is a right way and wrong way to take advantage of geo-push, and mobile marketers don’t have the best track record when it comes to using new marketing technology the right way.

What exactly does the right way mean? It means sending highly relevant messages to a select group of users. Even though location based push is fairly new, retailers have already started blasting out broadcast deal alerts to every user who passes one of their stores. That’s a surefire way to lose customers. Imagine a world where you can’t walk past a store without getting a push notification about some irrelevant special deal? No thanks.

The below campaigns exhibit all the elements of a solid, non-spammy geo-push strategy that your users will appreciate:


ANNOUNCING RELEVANT SALES BASED ON PURCHASE HISTORY: If a user walks by your store, geo-push is a perfect opportunity to let them know about a sale they’d be interested in. How do you know they’d be interested? Segment by purchase history.

PRO TIP: Have multiple stores in a given area? Be careful to restrict the geo-push so the end user only gets the notification once.


ANNOUNCING NEW ARRIVALS: Similar to the above, you should also announce new arrivals based on purchase history. It’s a perfect opportunity to keep shoppers in the know, and grant them early access to great new products that they care about.

Zara sent the below push notification to frequent customers (those who shop often at Zara) passing by their store: 


UNSPENT CREDIT OR GIFT CARD: True story; I was recently walking by Sephora in downtown Boston when I received a geo-push notifying me about an unspent gift card I - needed to use. The push got me in the door, and, 45 minutes later, walking out the door with an unholy amount of beauty products - far more than what was on my gift card. Retailers have long known that gift cards can be a great way to incentivize larger purchases, geo-push can take that strategy to the next level.

PRO TIP: Let the user know how much they have to spend. The more detailed the push, the more compelling.
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PROMOTE LOYALTY PROGRAMS: If you have users that aren’t part of your loyalty program, try sending a targeted offer to drive them to sign up. Keep it relevant by restricting the campaign to members who have walked by one of your stores more than 3x in the past week.

PRO TIP: You can also try the same campaign in reverse. Reward the members of your loyalty program and drive store visits by offering an exclusive deal to those members who have been by one of your stores recently, but haven’t made any purchases.
CVS hit a user with this friendly reminder while they were in-store, so they didn't miss out on any coupons they had on their ExtraCare card.