Nearly every app wants your location data. That’s because location is now so valuable to marketers as a targeting, analytics and attribution tool. However, users are often wary of sharing location for privacy reasons.
Outside of obvious use cases, such as maps and navigation, weather or a local search scenario, the challenge for marketers is to get users to opt in to location sharing with a simple value proposition. This is a persistent challenge because consumers often don’t see a clear benefit or don’t see location sharing as necessary for the specific app. Furthermore, marketers that collect location data surreptitiously risk fines and other penalties.
Location analytics company Placed has a novel solution: It wants to give mobile users frequent flyer miles in exchange for sharing their location data. The company launched an app called Frequent Flyer, which will award miles from four major airlines to users who allow the app to track their location persistently.
The app is available for both Android and iOS and joins two other opt-in Placed apps (Give2Charity and Panel App) the company uses to capture location information. The data it collects from its users provides competitive insights and offline attribution information to Placed’s brand and retail customers. The company also occasionally surveys users through its apps about their shopping behaviors and purchase habits.
Placed says consumers can earn up to 100 airline miles a month by sharing location. Placed adds it has 10 million app installs, by consumers who have opted in to share location (by definition). This in turn, according to the company, “generates over two billion first-party location data points.”
Location is about far more than real-time geofencing and coupon delivery. As indicated, location and location history operate as a kind of real-world cookie that can provide deep audience insights, as well as digital-to-offline attribution. If you’re a brand or enterprise marketer and sell things offline, and you’re not using location for one or more of these purposes, you’re not getting a true picture of your audience or ROI.