What Is Geofencing Marketing? Definition, Techniques and Tips

Geofencing Marketing

As advertising gets more expensive, and consumer groups become more fragmented, some marketing companies use geospatial data for geofences in certain areas. This allows them to advertise to customers more likely to buy and saves money on marketing to people who are unlikely to buy from them.

What is geofencing marketing and how does it work? What are the reasons that advertising agencies use it? How can you make the most of it in your marketing campaigns? These questions and many more will be answered in the sections below.

What is geofencing marketing and why is it important?

Geofencing marketing is a strategy that creates virtual boundaries around an area. tracks when someone using a mobile device crosses them. This causes a notification announcing a nearby brand, service, or product to be sent out to the person’s mobile phone.

Sometimes referred to also as geofencing advertising, it’s a new method for targeting the most likely customers of a company to understand first, and consider how traditional advertising works. An advertiser sends ads via mass media channels (e.g. TV and radio, newspapers, magazines, flyers, and radio) to reach as wide an audience as possible. This is an incredibly random approach. However, the people they reach might not be interested. What the company can offer if they want to buy the products or services advertised.

In contrast, Geofencing allows marketers to set specific spatial boundaries in which their ads are deployed. This allows them to reach people nearby who are more likely than others to shop at that particular business due to proximity, demographics and brand affinity, and other attributes. This is much more cost-effective and efficient than mass advertising which is broad-based, random, and costly.

How geofencing marketing works

There are 3 main ways to create geofences. First, you can use a centroid radius. This is done by locating the center point of a property or building and then calculating the distance from it (i.e. A radius is a distance in all directions. This creates a general vicinity zone that will send ads to anyone who is within a reasonable distance of a point of interest.

The second involves a walk/drive time, also called an isochrone. This is the process of calculating how long it takes to travel to a specific point from another location, using all available transportation methods. The company can then only send ads to those who are able to travel within a certain time frame to their business location. This geofence allows you to market based on the ease with which people can reach your business. Instead of how close they are, people living nearby may have difficulty getting to a business due to obstacles or a lack of transportation routes.

The third option is with building footprints. This method uses measured polygons in order to show the exact boundaries of a point of interest, regardless of whether it’s a whole building, a park, or a single store unit within a mall. A business can then only send notifications to those who have actually walked through the building or visited the property. This is a targeted method to target people who visit a business and signal a desire to purchase something.

Also read: A Full Guide What is Location-Based Marketing

Four benefits of geofencing Marketing

We have already discussed how geofence-based marketing is different than traditional marketing. Let’s now take a closer look at the four advantages that geofence-based advertising offers over traditional marketing.

1. Timely

Geofencing ads are often more effective than traditional ads because are a good example. that are delivered almost immediately in response to potential customers’ actions. You don’t need to wait for someone else to read your newspaper or magazine if you are a business owner. You must be on the TV or radio during a particular time to see your ad.

Once they cross your geofence You can start marketing to them right away. It is also a better time to reach customers because they are close to where they can buy from you. You don’t need to rely on them to remember. You’re advertising until they decide to shop in the area around your store.

2. Targeted

Advertising with geofences has another advantage in that they cover certain geographic areas. This allows marketers to place them where they expect customers to be. Contrast this with mass marketing This is used to cover large areas, such as countries, regions, and cities. This makes it more difficult to reach consumers who are interested.

3. Economical

Geofence marketing campaigns are cost-effective because they can be deployed in precise locations. Mass advertising can be expensive as it requires a lot of resources to spread a message over a large area. This belief is based on the belief of more exposure is better.

However, When marketing with geofences, though, You only need to pay for the ads that you place in the areas you choose. If they are used correctly, they can reach more people who are more likely to become customers.

4. Flexible

Geofences can be made in many different ways, They can be adapted to your marketing strategy. They can be set up to cover a specific area around your business. Or just the business’ grounds you can only advertise to customers who are already in your store.

They can be set up in areas that are within a reasonable transit time of your business or near places that receive high foot traffic to let people know your business offers an alternative. Geofences can be set up near competitors to let consumers know that your business is an option if they are unable to find the product they want at the right price.

Also read: What is Grassroots Marketing? A Beginner’s Guide

Four top strategies for geofencing marketing

Marketing is a sector that is increasingly becoming more about personalization. You can’t set up geofences around your business randomly and expect tons of conversions. It is important to know who your customers really are, what they do, where they live, how they travel, and when. Here are four ways to get the most from your marketing geofences.

1. Check to see if people in your area are likely customers or not

Mass marketing can be dangerous because it blindly targets people who are not interested in the products and services being offered. Marketing geofences, on the other hand, can have the same problem if not considered for their intended audience.

It is important to study the demographics of your local population before setting up geofences for your business. This will help you to determine which census block groups are most likely to yield customers so that you can place your geofences accordingly.

2. Your strategy and your scenario will guide how you build your geofences

Based on your marketing strategy, and the geographic location of your business, certain methods of creating geofences might work better than others. Let’s take, for example, the possibility that your store is near competitors or businesses you wish to cross-promote. You might want to make geofences that are based on the footprints of buildings. This allows you to target specific locations and avoid other related businesses.

Another scenario is to make the most you may want to take advantage of your business’s proximity to popular tourist attractions. You might set up radius-based geofences using points of interest and property data. You might also want to set up isochrone geofences that are based on transportation and mobility data if your business is located near other areas where people hang out.

3. Pay attention to the time

Knowing where they are and who lives near your business is just as important. Also, knowing when will be there is equally important. To ensure that your geofences are delivering the right marketing messages at certain times of the day, you need to calibrate them. If you own a restaurant, for example, geofences used to advertise a breakfast special at 8:00 PM are unlikely to convert many customers.

Keep in mind, however, that certain demographics might be more inclined to visit certain places at specific times of the day or on particular days of the week. Make sure you adjust the messages your geofences send to reach the right people at the right times. Mobility data can be used to determine when customers visit certain stores or neighborhoods.

4. You must ensure that your foundational data are accurate and exact

No matter if you are using POI or property, mobility, or demographics transportation data to help you build your geofences advertising ensures that you only get it from trusted sources. You could have serious problems if your calculations, polygons, or other data are incorrect.

You might, for example, overextend the reach of your geofences and overrepresent your audience. You might also position your geofences in census block groups that aren’t your target audience. You’ll be spending too much on marketing to reach people you don’t expect to convert into customers.

However, incorrect data could lead to geofences being too small or not reaching your target demographics. It may appear that your advertising campaign failed. It was actually a poor data error that prevented your campaign from reaching the people you wanted.

Also read: Nonprofit Marketing: What Is It, Benefits, Planning and Strategies

How to track the success of your geofencing marketing campaign

You need to determine how effective an advertising campaign has been in driving sales and other business goals, regardless of whether it uses geofences. Geofences can be used for marketing purposes, but the method you use to do this may not be as intuitive. While you are tracking stats based on physical locations, some may be digital.

  • Impressions: This is a simple count of how many times someone’s mobile device has crossed into your geofences. It counts the number of times your ads have been sent, regardless of whether they were actually acted on.
  • Reach: This is the count of the number of mobile devices that have crossed the borders of one or more of your geofences. This is similar to impressions except it doesn’t count multiple visits from the exact same person.
  • See attribution: This shows how many mobile devices have crossed a geofence in a given time period and how long they stayed within it. This is especially helpful if you use geofences that are based on the footprint of your stores. You can see how many people have actually visited your stores, and whether they made a purchase.
  • Conversions: This is the number of times that consumers have taken an action that your advertisements prompted. This is usually measured by them purchasing something from your company, but they can also be measured in other ways. It could be as simple as them going into your store (visit attribution), and signing up for a newsletter or rewards program.
  • Cost per Acquisition: This measure measures the effectiveness of your marketing campaign in converting consumers into customers. This is calculated by taking the total campaign cost and subtracting it from the number of conversions. This number should be lower than the average.

Leading examples of geofencing marketing + advertising

What does advertising with geofences look and feel like? These are just a few examples of geofencing advertisements: Companies who have used geospatial data to improve the precision of their marketing campaigns.


Billups wanted to accurately measure outdoor advertising impressions and conversions. Cross-referencing anonymous mobile device GPS data and POI data was part of the solution. They were able to estimate the route taken and the number of billboards encountered on the way.

It is possible to track online conversions linked to these ad impressions using web technologies like cookies. It’s harder for physical stores, however, because anonymized mobility data cannot always be used to determine if a person has visited a particular store. For example, a person could have parked in a nearby parking lot or visited a nearby store.

Billups used polygon-based property information to solve this problem. It was used to create geofences that corresponded to the building footprints for the stores they were trying to measure conversions. They could then determine with precision if someone who saw their ads visited a specific store.

Media Storm

Media Storm ran advertising campaigns to re-engage customers that had just visited their stores. These visitors were to be converted into buyers and, preferably, kept coming back. Although they started by collecting anonymous GPS locations on mobile devices, it was not very helpful in determining whether someone had visited a client’s or a competitor’s store. This was because they didn’t have precise information about the exact locations of their clients’ shops or their competitors’.

Also, proximity models based on centroids were not effective in crowded areas like malls and downtown neighborhoods. They could include people not related to their clients’ or competitors’ conversions. They included pedestrians and visitors from nearby buildings.

Geofences were created using property data, which was based on polygons matching the building footprints of competitor and client stores. Media Storm combined the anonymized mobility data with its license to create geofences. It was able to determine how many people visited a competitor’s or client’s store while disregarding people who may have been nearby.

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