Big brands and international marketers aren't the only ones that can take advantage of geo-targeted mobile advertising. A relatively new marketing platform called Moasis
is helping small businesses get into the game by providing technology that they can use to target consumers using mobile devices at specific, pre-defined locations and times.
How It Works
Publishers and developers can monetize their mobile applications by partnering with Moasis to run locally relevant ads. Smartphone users who've opted to share their location information will see in-app ads run by local businesses and national brands when they enter certain pre-defined geographic areas or open up their devices at local events, like professional sporting matches and farmer's markets.
A consumer who opens up her favorite smartphone app while walking near a mall, for example, might see an ad for a local clothing store located inside the mall. That ad might include a 10 percent-off coupon as a way to entice the customer to come inside, or it might include a map to the store, a phone number to call or links to a mobile website that the customer can check out for more information. Moasis ads can be viewed on any Internet-connected device with location-enabled capabilities, including smartphones, tablets and laptop computers.
Moasis in Action
Small businesses that take advantage of Moasis can compete with national retailers without losing control of their advertising budgets. The platform encourages small-business owners to design and manage their own local ads, knowing that these ads can be dynamically altered to respond to consumer behavior and attract individualized audiences on a daily or even hourly basis.
Once a business has designed its ads, it's time to determine where those ads should run. Moasis gives small-business owners total control, letting them choose the geographic locations—also known as "grids" or "cells"—where their targeted ads should appear. Ads can be as targeted as two city blocks, or as broad as an entire neighborhood or town. Although businesses are encouraged to select their own grids based on their own research and marketing data, Moasis also offers tools that automatically match business' ads to the relevant locations where their desired customers are most likely to be.
The last step in setting up a location-based ad campaign with Moasis is to name a price. Moasis works similarly to Google AdWords, in that it relies on business owners to define their own budgets and decide how much they're willing to spend to run their ads at certain days and times. Businesses tell Moasis how much they're willing to bid for each ad impression and how much they'd like to spend overall, and the platform automatically cuts off ads as soon as a business' spend rates have been reached.
Why It Works
Moasis gives businesses a way to run smarter advertisements, and it offers SMBs a number of analytics and data tools to determine whether the performance of their ads justifies the cost. Businesses that use Moasis' geo-grid-based analytics can measure ad performance on a cell-by-cell or block-by-block basis, easily seeing if the ads that appear when consumers are walking along First Avenue are performing any better than the ads that appear when consumers are walking along Second Avenue, for example. If it does turn out that a specific cell or block is under-performing, then a business owner can quickly pivot and change the locations
or times when he wants his ads to show up.
Maximizing the Benefits
For business owners to be successful using the Moasis platform, they have to be proactive. The campaigns that SMBs run through Moasis can be—and should be—adjusted on a daily or hourly basis to respond to changing consumer behavior. Although it may be effective for a business to run ads for consumers within a four-block radius between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., for example, the effectiveness of those ads is likely to drop off once business hours are through. By keeping track of these types of variables, and not being afraid to make changes to their campaigns when necessary, businesses can truly get full use out of their Moasis campaigns. Read more "How It Works." Stephanie Miles is an associate editor at Street Fight. She is based in Portland, Ore.Image courtesy Moasis