Location based marketing, along with proximity marketing, are two simple ways to get results from your ad campaigns.

We’ve run plenty of articles in the past that talk about how location based marketing and proximity marketing, can help you get a much better response rate from prospects than the old “shot in the dark” type of campaign.

As we segue into the end of the year, we’re going to do some recaps of previous articles, how-to’s and other popular topics – hopefully we can lay out all the pieces for you and make it that much easier to run a successful campaign.

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Obviously one of the most relevant campaigns that use location based marketing or proximity marketing to generate interest and get results is the real estate open house.  If you’re not a realtor, don’t worry, I’m going to show you how this applies to nearly any and every business in existence, even though I’m going to use the real estate example to do that.

What is location based marketing?  How is that different from proximity marketing?

Simply put, one is matter of big distances and one is a matter of small distances.   Using location based marketing – or geotargeting (geofencing) – is casting a wide net around the user.

For instance, you are a real estate agent and you are hosting an open house.  The house you have listed is in a nice residential area, with the usual setup of blocks, cul de sacs, and two entrances into the neighborhood from the main roads.

You’re going to want to set up some welcome message triggers, either by address or GPS coordinates.  This means that when the user’s phone is in the covered area, they’ll receive your welcome message.

Check out this image, showing where the open house property is located, relative to the rest of the neighborhood –

Location Based Marketing


The three red circles are the spots where we suggest that you create a welcome message for potential visitors – “Welcome to the open house at 100 N Wonder Way” or anything equally brief (remember the lock screen notification is about the size of an SMS or tweet) that gets your point across and let’s the user know they’re in the correct neighborhood.

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After your open house, you’re probably going to want to delete these messages, although you might consider leaving a single message on the street where the house is located, to confirm with prospects that this is your listing.

Ok, location based, got it.  How about proximity?

Proximity is a narrow band marketing area – it’s defined by iBeacons – small radio transmitters that send a message to the phone.  We normally say that location based marketing is for outdoor use and proximity marketing is for indoor use.

Here’s an example of two places in the house that you might station an iBeacon (unless you’re working with a home larger than 5,000 SF then you’ll only need a single beacon) – the red circles on top of the furniture upstairs and downstairs.

location based marketing


That’s nice, but I’m not a realtor.

Great, you’re not a realtor, but you’ve read this far, so you must be interested in how this would work for your business…

  • If you’re in a business that has a physical location, you would set up roughly the same way – have a welcome or “how to find us” type of message that popped nearby, and perhaps follow that up with an iBeacon message in the physical business – again, either a welcome message or possibly an offer – a discount, a membership, something free, etc
  • If you’re managing a trade show or event, then you would use both the geo and the proximity elements to route traffic, let attendees know where to park, where to register, where to go for the next seminar or event they’re signed up to attend.  This is also a great way to make sure speakers, vendors, sponsors and volunteers are updated with to-the-minute information about changes to venues or schedule, along with regular attendees
  • If you’re in the online marketing business, perhaps you won’t be using the location or the proximity marketing elements very often, but it is super nice to be able to let your students, fans or prospects know that you’re nearby when they’re attending a popular trade show like Affiliate Summit, Ad:Tech, or MJBiz.


Chief takeaways:

Let’s wrap this one up, you’ve probably still got some leftover turkey and you’re ready for lunch –

#1 – Location based marketing uses a broad area, mostly outside unless your business is really big (like the fair or a golf course, but wait, those are outside!)

#2 – Proximity marketing uses an iBeacon radio to market on a smaller scale – mostly indoors unless your business is really small (we’re struggling for an example here, lol)

#3 – You don’t need to be a real estate agent to use either of these, that’s just a killer example with super easy images to use to illustrate

#4 – People who receive triggers on their phone are 67% more likely to buy something or take an immediate action.  Immediately.