The Psychology Behind Beacon Marketing - VoiceSage

The Psychology Behind Beacon Marketing

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As a marketer, there’s no shortage of tools available to you. Beacon marketing is one of the newest techs available. It involves using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) to transmit information to cell phones that are near a physical location. With the help of location technology and proximity marketing, beacon marketing lets retailers send promotional text messages, reminders, and more to convert and retain customers. Messages aren’t just personalized; they’re hyper-relevant and timely.

Beacon marketing is a way to reinforce the brick-and-mortar experience and encourage return customers. And it works! Beacon marketing is expected to be worth $52.46 billion by 2022.

But how does beacon marketing keep customers coming back? Here’s the psychology behind it.

Why Use Beacon Marketing?

Beacon marketing has been available for less than 10 years, but it’s spread to become a more enticing way to connect with customers. Instead of using the old-school top-down marketing approach, beacon marketing helps you address customers’ current needs. You deliver the right messages at the right time and improve your chances of standing out from competitors.

Here’s what you need to know about why beacon marketing is such an effective tool.

  1. Deeper customer insights. With beacon marketing, you can capture how frequently customers shop in-store, what products they buy, and what coupon codes they use. Use the data you collect to create future marketing campaigns that contain relevant offers. For example, if a segment of customers buys a particular brand of coffee, send them a message during their next visit, introducing other products the brand sells in-store. You end up cross-selling your customers and increasing overall sales.
  2. Low-cost messaging. Bluetooth transmitters don’t cost much—between £10 to £40. What you pay depends on factors like the kind of range you need and battery life. Messages are sent through your existing app as push notifications. You don’t have to invest in expensive new tech or hardware—beacon marketing works with what you have.
  3. Improved customer engagement. Studies show that text messages have a higher open rate than other message types, like email. 98% of texts are opened vs. 20% of emails. Open rates, as well as click-through rates (CTR), are also high with beacon marketing. In fact, beacon messages have an average CTR of 80%. Imagine a customer getting a text message from their favorite store just as they’re walking around the corner. Of course, they’re going to open it immediately to find out more and click on the offer. Messages are sent at crucial times in the customer journey, which improves the chances of customers taking action.

Make sure to always get customers’ permission before sending them messages. Also, give them the option to opt-out and not receive messages. Finally, be mindful of how much personalization you use. There’s a fine line between personal and intrusive.

How Beacon Marketing Works Psychologically

Beacon marketing is successful because it caters to the psychological triggers that influence customers’ buying decisions. Once you understand your customers’ needs, you can use the corresponding psychological trigger to close the sale.

Let’s look at how psychology helps you create a better brick-and-mortar shopping experience for customers.

Recency effect

The recency effect is the phenomenon where customers remember the most recent event they experienced. This memory, and the feeling they’re left with, is what customers use to make future decisions. All that to say, a negative experience can lead to churned or lapsed customers.

Beacon marketing proactively re-engages customers and improves their experience. The next time the customer is near the store, send a win-back message with a special offer. For example, a customer visits a store six times and has positive experiences. During their seventh visit, a salesperson is rude, so the customer speaks with the store manager or calls support services to complain. The customer complaint is logged, tracked, and becomes a piece of data you can use in win-back campaigns.

Send these customers a “we miss you” message with a time-sensitive discount code to use in-store. First, connect your CRM software using VoiceSage’s API. Then send a template message (insert customer name and complaint) when customers who’ve complained are near a store.

Beacon Marketing win back message


Social anxiety works against your bottom line. Pushy salespeople might get one sale, but they prevent customers from returning. Instead, customers retreat to ecommerce to escape the pressure. As a result, in-store sales drop—which hurts your ROI since you have rent and salespeople to pay. Get customers back in stores by using beacon marketing to promote products in a gentler, less physically intrusive way. Sure, customers may get a message, but they can interact with it when they’re ready. You’ve reminded them of your product or promo, and that you’re there for them.

For example, when customers are in an aisle in-store, send them a message with a coupon for a nearby product. Customers can touch and feel the product in real life while getting digital assistance. Use the customer data you’ve collected and remind customers of products in their digital cart that are available in-store.

The shopping experience improves (since there’s less pressure), and the beacon messages work by being friendly. Customers can browse and explore comfortably with a virtual companion.

VoiceSage helps you use the data you track online—the majority of shoppers like to research online first, then buy in-store—and remind customers when they’re in-store. There’s more in-store engagement and conversion since beacon marketing messages guide customers while they’re in a store.

Beacon Marketing sales support message


Self-awareness is a person’s in-depth knowledge of their own strengths, weaknesses, needs, motivations, and more. It helps customers make decisions and clearly share their needs.

31% of customers say they want more personalization. This is important since customers focus on what’s most relevant to them. They need information that relates to their personal customer journey. The result of personalization is increased customer loyalty and retail growth.

But personalization isn’t just about using the customer’s name. Author and all-around marketing whiz Seth Godin says, “[Personalization] is a chance to differentiate at a human scale, to use behavior as the most important clue about what people want and more important, what they need.” Know your customers, and what they need and when, to retain them longer.

Beacon marketing lets you personalize content to include what’s relevant and important to customers. Personalization sparks action. As an example, send targeted ads or in-store offers for brands and products customers have purchased in the past. Then use VoiceSage’s proximity marketing feature to create a richer brand experience. Incorporate customer purchase data and ecommerce tracking data to strengthen the brand experience.

SMS sales message

Learn how to use proximity marketing to engage customers: How to Use Proximity Marketing to Improve Customer Engagement

Use Beacon Marketing to Improve In-Store Customer Experience

Ecommerce is growing at breakneck speed, but many customers still prefer shopping in-store. Use beacon marketing like a shopping assistant to get (and keep) customers engaged. One option is to combine the online and offline shopping experience, so even though customers are in a physical store, they can still be targeted with cross-selling opportunities, digital promotions, retargeting ads, and more.

Use your customer data to better understand your customers’ unique psychological triggers. Launch and monitor your campaigns and make adjustments to get more customers through your doors and buying products.

Contact us today to find out more about how VoiceSage can support your beacon marketing initiatives.

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Published on: 16th December 2019

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