TLDR: Beaconstac is the best proximity marketing application. It features an intuitive and easy to use QR code generator that makes localised marketing seamless. Their solution is used by many large corporations such as UNICEF, Puma, Nestle, and The Ritz Carlton, among others.
First introduced by Apple in 2013, beacon technology is one of the latest advancements in location technology. To understand this, let’s take a short walk to the past.
Think about how lighthouses used to emit beacons of light into the sea to guide sailors. Now picture that from a technology standpoint. Instead of a lighthouse emitting light, it is a small Bluetooth radio transmitter sending signals to mobile devices.
Beacon technology comes in handy for sending promotions, discounts, upcoming events, and any other reminders to customers when they walk into a store.
The technology is in use by stores such as Urban Outfitters, Timberland, and Macy’s.
What Is proximity marketing?
Now that we are familiar with beacon technology, let’s talk about proximity marketing.
In a nutshell, proximity marketing is communicating with your customers at the right place, at the right time, and with a personalized message.
Proximity marketing bridges the gap between online and offline marketing by harnessing the targeting power of Bluetooth and Wi-fi technology to deliver marketing messages to customers who are within the vicinity of a store and are looking to make a purchase.
Some of the most popular proximity marketing strategies include on-the-spot digital coupons, barcode marketing, and interactive digital signage.
Listed below are some of the best proximity marketing apps in 2021.
What Is the Best QR Code Marketing Solution?
1. Beaconstac – Best Overall QR Code Generator
Founded in 2009, Beaconstac has been around for a long time. The company was established to create a link between the physical and digital worlds through the use of innovative technology such as QR codes. Nowadays, QR codes are used by small and large business owners to keep tabs on the efficiency of their offline marketing campaigns digitally.
Beaconstac is one of the most trusted QR Code generators. It’s used by corporations such as UNICEF, Puma, Nestle, and The Ritz Carlton, among others.
The software allows business owners to create a variety of QR codes ranging from events, menus, and business cards, all within minutes. Thanks to Beaconstac being so easy to use, you don’t even need any technical knowledge or help to start making QR codes. Regardless of what you’re aiming to achieve with your marketing campaign, you’re already halfway there with Beaconstac.
- Create customized QR Codes by adding a logo or changing colors
- Retarget customers who bounced off of your campaigns on Facebook and Google Ads
- Print QR Codes in multiple formats and HD quality
- Measure and track your campaign; the number of scans, location of scans, phone operating systems, etc.
- Edit QR Code wherever you are, whenever you want
- Send multiple offers with one QR code
- Easy customization
- Excellent customer support
- The dashboard is super-easy to navigate
- Constant improvements to their program and features
- Updating your PDF updates the QR code instantly
- Used by Fortune 500 companies
- Analytics needs some tweaking. There’s some inaccuracy in scan location data. It can result from various factors not necessarily in control of Beaconstac.
The pricing of Beaconstac varies based on the volume of QR codes that are linked to your business.
The Starter plan gets you three dynamic QR codes for $60/year or $5/month.
The lite plan gives you access to 50 dynamic QR codes for $150/year or $12.50/month.
The Pro plan gets you 250 dynamic QR codes for $490/year or $40/month.
2. Bleesk – Most Flexible QR Code Marketing Solution
Established in 2014, Bleesk is a top proximity platform provider aimed at helping marketers utilize the power of beacons and contextual campaigns. Supported on both Android and IOS platforms, Bleesk is available in all countries and is designed to receive notifications from various industries. However, the features of Bleesk have a key focus on upcoming events.
The best thing about Bleesk? It’s a single app with multiple uses.
With Bleesk, you can dynamically adjust your monthly charge to only pay for what you need. You can also get a free consultation for your project.
Bleesk is a:
- Geofence App
- Beacon App
- Retail App
- Loyalty App
- Event App
Bleesk is the only complete plug-and-play proximity app with App, CMS, SDK, and API.
- Apart from being a QR code generator, Bleesk also has an in-built QR code scanner
- Send Push Notifications to your customer’s phones regardless of their location
- Create QR code campaigns with special offers
- Compatible with Facebook Pixel and Google Ads to retarget customers who walk away
- Customer profiling. Send campaigns to specific clients
- Deliver proximity campaigns using Wi-Fi routers
- Loyalty and Survey campaigns
- Real-time indoor location navigation
- The app is available everywhere
- Great user experience
- Step-by-step guidelines
- Pay for what you need
- Bleesk is an all-in-one platform
- Demo account trial time is short. It is hard to test the many features with such limited time.
Unlike many proximity apps, Bleesk enables you to save money by only paying for the features you use. Because of this, there are no payment plans to choose from. You describe your business scenario to Bleesk, they then suggest an optimal solution with the best price.
Have a look at the Bleesk demo to familiarize yourself with the app for free.
Heads up – Bleesk offers a 50% discount for yearly plans.
3. Lisnr – Most Innovative Proximity App
If you thought beacon technology sounded futuristic, the contactless authentication offered by Lisnr seems like something off a movie.
So, what is all the fuss about?
Lisnr is an advanced, ultrasonic data-over-sound technology that enables quick, reliable, and secure communication between devices that have a microphone and a speaker.
Lisnr is by far the most innovative platform on this list. Lisnr is at the forefront of revolutionizing the way data is transmitted and received. Lisnr has been around since 2012 and has served lots of Fortune 100 companies, including Intel and Visa.
Lisnr comes in handy for a variety of cases such as:
- Mobile checkout
- Kiosk checkout
- Curbside pickup
- Instore pickup
The world we live in is changing by the day. Take a look at the current pandemic, for instance. Contactless solutions have stopped being perceived as a luxury; they are now a necessity. That’s where programs such as Lisnr come in handy.
- Best in class transmission, reliability, and confirmation
- Local tone generation for device-to-device connectivity
- Ultra-low-power data transmission
- Can transmit up to 1000/bits-per-second per channel
- Beaconing channel to increase performance and security
- Full duplex. Lisnr can send and receive data simultaneously
- Range varies from a few centimeters to many meters
- In-depth analytics
- Real-time transmission optimization
- Better customer experience than RF protocols
- The ultra-low-power Lisnr outperforms other short-range alternatives such as Bluetooth and NFC
- Works offline with no data connection
- In use with Fortune 500 companies
- Lack of dedicated hardware as data-over-sound communication relies on microphones and speakers.
Just like Bleesk, Lisnr has no payment plans. Enterprise pricing is flexible based on the required use and company size. The price is also based on the expected support and usage per device. Lisnr also offers trial access where you can get familiar with their platform before committing.
4. Cloud4Wi – Best Wi-Fi Marketing Solution
The world is getting digitized. While the number of mobile devices steadily rises by the day, people are also getting used to being connected wherever they go.
That is where Cloud4Wi comes in.
Cloud4Wi offers Volare, a guest Wi-Fi solution that takes Wi-Fi strategies to the next level. Volare bridges the gap between online and retail stores, creating a pleasurable in-store experience while also benefiting the company. It is no secret that people love using their phones inside stores to look up their wishlist or share their experience with others.
Cloud4Wi provides customers with Wi-Fi while still gaining information about the clients, which is valuable for marketing.
This is how the Wi-Fi strategy works:
- Provide a free internet connection with an easy login
- Detect how much time clients spend in a store and in which sections they hover around
- Know the customers and their preferences
- Deliver personalized messages and offers
Some of Cloud4Wi’s clients include Prada, Armani, Burger King, BVLGARI, and McDonald’s.
- Customize a splash-page with your branding
- Customize the guest Wi-Fi onboarding
- Collect and process data based on consent
- Customize your policies with flexibility
- Discover on-site behaviors with the Wi-Fi analytics
- Trigger messages based on on-site behaviors
- Contact guests via mobile phone or EMail
- Rich set of APIs and webhooks
- Perfect for luxury retail chains with multiple locations
- Powerful location-analytics features such as heatmaps
- Out-of-the-box location-based marketing tools
- Minimum of 25 access points required
- Priced per lead
- Not for small businesses
Cloud4Wi’s pricing model allows you to select a package that best suits your marketing needs. That said, there are no predefined payment plans. Simply contact Cloud4Wi then they get back to you with a quote. Cloud4Wi offers a demo too.
5. Appadia – Best Large-Scale Proximity Solution
Appadia is a software-as-a-service solution that delivers proximity-based advertisements, deals, promotions, coupons, and other information to shoppers. The shoppers are identified through Bluetooth, Beacons, GPS, and Wi-Fi, and are served through the mall or shopping centers mobile apps.
The best thing about Appadia is its simplicity. The app can be accessible in malls across the world, both big and small. The developers publish and maintain a native app for a mall on both the Apple store and the Google Play store.
While providing the mall with features that give shoppers valuable information, they also create a platform for proximity advertisements. The company also puts up proximity beacons that are compatible with both Eddystone and iBeacons. The beacons are used alongside Wi-Fi and GPS.
The retailers then get an easy-to-use dashboard that they can use to create deals and promotions.
- Easy to use dashboard
- Notification preferences
- Track performance of campaigns
- Store profile
- Schedule PADs
- Parking locator
- Digital loyalty card
- Shoppers receive relevant notifications
- Shoppers can save their favorites for easy access
- Works with both iBeacon and Eddystone
- Suits all stores from small start-ups to large retail stores
- Supported on Android and IOS
- Can be rebranded
- Available in all clients
- In limited use – no ratings or reviews
- Expensive compared to other solutions
Appadia’s has a couple of packages starting with the Lite plan, which gets you the basics for $299/month billed annually. The Essential plan comes with Google Analytics reports and an E-mail marketing solution for $299/month billed annually.
The Advanced plan further includes social media management and graphic design tools for $999/month billed annually. The Premium package includes a weekly Email Blast and two social media posts weekly for $1499/month billed annually.
Although the space is still fairly new, proximity marketing is quickly gaining traction in the field. It is obviously past its trial phase with many companies creating unique propositions so that retailers can find out more about their customer.
Data obtained by proximity solutions, combined with browsing history, will allow businesses to target clients like never before. With the gradual shift of the world towards digitalization, proximity marketing will be a big thing in the future.
We hope that this article equipped you with valuable insights about proximity marketing and beacon technology. You are now ready to equip your business with the latest technologies in digital marketing.
Take the first step and try using one of these products to enhance your in-store customer experience.