Accurate Location in Limited Supply, Findings from Placed Research

In the same way in which ad viewability was the hot topic issue these past 18 months, Placed anticipates location accuracy to enter into the headlines.  Placed’s research found that on average the accuracy of exchange based locations were on average off by more than 4 city blocks!  Additionally only 1% of bid request are accurate enough to identify store visits.

 

Download Placed’s Accuracy & Bias in Ad Exchange-Derived Location Data White Paper at https://www.placed.com/resources/white-papers/location-accuracy-bias

 

Excerpts from the white paper:

 

Growth in location based advertising is tied to continued growth in mobile usage. Current spend projections for location based targeting are estimated to reach almost $30B by 2020. As spend increases, so will expectations around validating the accuracy of both the location data and the subsequent visitation impact

 

However, there are several well known limitations of exchange-derived location data. First, the

source (e.g., GPS, cell tower, WIFI, IP) and accuracy of a given exchange-derived location data

point is generally unknown without additional validation. Second, given that ad impressions are

served and exchange-derived locations are observed only when the device is in use, there is the

potential for significant measurement bias to exist.

 

High-level results from the location accuracy analysis include:

 

  • The average accuracy of exchange-derived locations is over 4 New York City blocks.
  • After filtering for location accuracy, only 1% of bid requests are useful for in-store measurement (based on a location accuracy < 50 meters).
  • 80% of bid requests are made while people are in between visits—and most of the rest are made at home, limiting viable use of the data for determining store visitation or affinity.

Takeaways from the analysis of bias in exchange-driven location data:

 

  • Exchange-derived locations are only present when the device owner is using the phone and browsing an app that serves ads, thus bid stream data over indexes on location data from Lodging, and Gyms & Fitness Centers– likely due to readily available wifi combined with extended time spent at a given business.
  • Key retail categories such as Fashion, Professional Services (ex. Staples, OfficeMax), Sporting Goods and Computers & Electronics are under-represented in bid data.
  • The skew toward a subset of commercial business categories creates a bias in exchange derived data that requires validation against first party data to ensure corrected weighting.

Most Popular Apps for Clinton and Trump Supporters

The differences between Trump and Clinton supporters extend beyond political view and into the apps that they are more likely to have installed on their smartphone. Utilizing Placed’s double opt-in audience, Placed was able to connect localized voting preferences to apps installed.

 

Using apps as a proxy, Clinton supporters are content generators with messaging and photo apps making up 70% of the list, while Trump supporters are more content consumers with 60% of the list including apps like NFL Mobile, Slacker Radio, Audible, Amazon Music, and Kindle. As it relates to retail, Trump supporters gravitate towards the market leaders with Walmart, the largest retailer in the US, and Amazon, the largest retailer in the US, representing 4 out of the top 10 apps.

 

For both candidates, the most popular businesses in the physical world by candidate preference have very little correlation with their supporters’ digital activities. This separation of offline versus online behaviors even for the same candidate highlights the importance of treating each medium in its own silo, as what works online isn’t necessarily going to work offline.

 

With Trump raising over $26MM in June through online and mail solicitations, it highlights digital as a strong channel to reach his strongest supporters and drive donations. Utilizing this list, Trump can focus fundraising efforts on apps where his supporters are most likely to be found. Clinton’s strength in social applications could represent an opportunity to replicate President Obama’s success in 2012 leveraging social media to drive donations.

 

Clinton Trump Supports Most Popular Apps

Free Burritos Are Driving Chipotle’s Recovery as Measured by Placed

Through a unique combination of location ratings service data and custom survey data, Placed was able to directly measure the change in visits to Chipotle during the frenzy following the restaurant’s E. coli outbreaks.

 

By analyzing location behaviors of consumers sourced from our Placed Insights service over a 13-month period, the data shows a drop in monthly Chipotle visitation that directly correlates with the outbreaks. Chipotle’s share in monthly traffic hit a low of 8.04% during the month of January 2016, a full three months after the first initial outbreak, representing the lowest visitor share over the 13-month period.

 

On February 8th, 2016, Chipotle shut down its nationwide stores to retrain staff on food safety. At the same time, the company launched a campaign to reintroduce customers to the brand with free burritos. Coupons worth a generous total of $70 million in free burritos were given away.

 

The “reintroduction period” with the support of millions of free burritos proved to be a promising tactic as Chipotle’s visitor share in Placed Insights for February and March show a gentle spike. More specifically, the burrito coupons pushed March 2016 visitor share to a level almost as high as that of the previous year (8.81% visitor share in March 2016 vs. 8.86% in March the year prior). Overall, the promotion had a material impact in winning back Chipotle customers.

 

CHI

Digging deeper into Placed Insights data reveals restaurants that benefited from Chipotle’s recent turmoil. In terms of visitor share within the Mexican restaurant category, there were a few notable beneficiaries:

 

Change in Mexican Restaurant Visitor Share, October 2015 vs. December 2015

  • Moe’s Southwest Grill, 5% increase
  • Del Taco, 2% increase

Looking beyond this category, Placed compared two leaders of the “fast-casual revolution,” Chipotle and Panera Bread. Examining overlap in visitation rates through November 2015, Panera Bread visitors were more likely to visit Chipotle than vice versa. However, in December 2015, the visitation points meet, indicating a shift in traffic from Chipotle to Panera.

 

Change in Chipotle & Panera Visitor Share Overlap, October 2015 vs. December 2015

  • % of Chipotle Visitors who also went to Panera grew 7%
  • % of Panera Visitors who also went to Chipotle dropped 3%

 Measuring Perception Across Chipotle Visitors in April 2016

To add some color and tell the whole story behind the numbers, Placed surveyed its audience on their most recent visit to Chipotle to find the ways that public sentiment has changed for the brand:

  • 46% had visited Chipotle within the last two weeks prior to their current visit
  • 19% of respondents cited a free burrito coupon as the primary reason for their visit, while 46% said a craving for Chipotle drove their visit
  • 70% are likely to visit Chipotle again within the next month
  • Over 90% are aware of the E. coli outbreaks, and among those who are aware, 79% visit about the same or more frequently since the news of the E. coli outbreak

Measuring the success of Chipotle’s strategy through free burrito coupons, Placed discovered that visitors who are less likely to frequent Chipotle due to the E. coli outbreaks are more likely to use Chipotle coupons than visitors whose visitation has increased or remained the same:

  • Among those who visit Chipotle less frequently due to the outbreaks, 23% used a free burrito coupon during their visit, which is 27% higher than those whose visits didn’t decrease during this time frame.
  • For coupon users who visit less frequently since the outbreaks, the majority said prior to this Chipotle visit, their last visit was within the last 6 months (29%) or more than 6 months ago (16%)
  • This group of users is also 61% likely to visit Chipotle in the next month

Chipotle’s approach to winning back customers with coupons shows signs of early success with directly measured foot traffic from Placed Insights, and perception metrics from Placed Survey.

Strong Start for Sprint’s “The Cut Your Bill in Half Event”

sprint_logoOn December 5th Sprint launched, “The Cut Your Bill in Half Event,” where consumers could bring a copy of their Verizon or AT&T bill to a Sprint store and their Sprint would cut their bill in half. Beyond the aggressive discounting, this promotion was unique in that it required a consumer to go into a Sprint store to complete the offer.

 

With the world’s largest opt-in location panel, Placed was able to directly measure the change in store visits to Sprint store as compared to the other wireless carriers. The results in the first two weeks were clear, this promotion is having a material impact in offline visits.

 

  • Week 1: Sprint saw the largest % increase in foot traffic across all wireless carrier stores
  • Week 2: Sprint increased foot traffic market share by almost 3% since the start of the sale

Download the White Paper, Foot Traffic Impact of Sprint’s ” The Cut Your Bill in Half Event” for additional details including corresponding TV spend.

 

Black Friday Shoppers – Not Your Average Consumer

As the biggest shopping day of the year, Black Friday is the pinnacle event for deal-hungry consumers who brave the crowds in search of steep discounts and door buster deals. For retailers, understanding who these shoppers are and how they behave is critical to driving more shoppers into their stores and capturing a greater share of holiday dollars.

 

In our recent report, Holiday Shopper Profile: Offline Insights into Thanksgiving and Black Friday Shoppers, we surveyed 14,645 smartphone panelists about their holiday shopping plans and combined this with direct measurement of their offline shopping behaviors to reveal interesting insights into this consumer segment.

 

When asked about their Black Friday shopping plans, nearly half of respondents planned to shop on Black Friday this year, with 1 in 4 still unsure if they will join in on the deal hunting.

  • Although online shopping continues to gain ground, the majority of consumers still prefer brick-and-mortar to click-to-order on Black Friday.

 

Black Friday shoppers are not your typical consumers. Placed found these shoppers displayed strong demographic characteristics to set them apart.

  • Black Friday Shoppers were significantly more likely to be Asian (index 133), Hispanic (114), and African Americans (110) than an average consumer.
  • Shoppers skewed younger, with those ages 25-34 over-indexing the highest, and were significantly more likely to have children.

 

Leveraging Placed Insights to directly measure consumers’ location behaviors, the study analyzed where those that planned to shop on Black Friday had a higher likelihood to visit even before the holiday season officially begins.

 

Not unexpectedly, Black Friday shoppers over-index to discount retailers in October, while at the same time branching out to premium brands such as Coach, Apple Store, and Whole Foods.

  • Based on observed retail visits in October, Black Friday shoppers showed a high affinity for Discount Retailers including Burlington Coat Factory, T.J. Maxx, Marshall’s, and Old Navy which indicates this shopper segment is actively looking for deals during the other 364 days of the year.
  • Apple Store, Coach, and Whole Foods are retailers where Black Friday shoppers over-indexed in October, highlighting this segment’s willingness to move up funnel for selected premium brands.

 

As Black Friday rapidly approaches, retailers that understand the behaviors and characteristics of shoppers roaming their aisles will be best positioned for a positive start to this holiday season.

 

To find out more about Black Friday shoppers, download our latest report.

‘Tis the Season to Showroom: Black Friday Smartphone Usage

With more than half of Americans armed with a smartphone this holiday season, these small devices are set to play a big role in how consumers shop – both in store and on screen.

 

In our recent report, Holiday Shopper Profile: Offline Insights into Thanksgiving and Black Friday Shoppers, we surveyed 14,645 smartphone panelists about their holiday shopping plans and combined this with direct measurement of their offline shopping behaviors to provide in-depth analysis into this consumer segment.

 

According to Black Friday shoppers, smartphones are the perfect deal-hunting companion. Nearly half of survey respondents planned to use their device to “get coupons/deals” this Black Friday, while 43% of shoppers plan to compare prices online while they are in a physical retail store – i.e. showroom.

 

Showrooming has evolved, moving from a niche behavior of tech-savvy shoppers to a widespread consumer activity. To combat showrooming and even leverage it to their advantage, retailers need to understand which aisles these consumers are likely to be browsing.

 

Based on observed visits in October, those that plan to use their smartphone to showroom on Black Friday had a higher propensity to visit Bookstores, Toys Stores, Beauty, Sporting Goods, and Shoe retailer categories. Drilling down further by retailer found DSW Shoe Warehouse, Ulta, Sports Authority, and Dick’s Sporting Goods display some of the strongest brand affinities among this audience during their pre-holiday shopping activities.

 

In an environment where shoppers hold the pricing power of the Internet in their hand, brick-and-mortar retailers need to go on the offensive. By combining targeted mobiles ads with exclusive in-store incentives, marketers can drive the right audience in-store with an experience that an online competitor can’t match.

 

To find out more about Thanksgiving and Black Friday shopper trends, download the report.

 

A New Way to Monetize Your App (without Ads)

How to monetize apps?  The challenge plagues many developers as they try to strike a balance between making money without compromising the user experience. With monetization options largely limited to paid app models, in-app purchasing, and ads (which impact user experience), it’s clear that developers need new ways to drive app dollars while keeping their experience intact.

 

Answering this need for more monetization options, Placed announced the launch of Placed Affiliate earlier this week, which offers app developers a new and easy way to monetize apps without altering the user experience.

 

If you’re interested in monetizing your app with Placed Affiliate, request an invitation to participate here.

Placed Affiliate provides incremental and recurring revenue to app developers by monetizing location data for market research, not ads, and works alongside existing monetization channels to increase total app revenue.

 

Set up is easy: Developers implement the SDK, users opt-in and, in exchange, the developer earns incremental income.

Placed Affiliate

 

What about privacy? Placed keeps user privacy at the core of its approach. Participating apps not only have location permissions enabled by the end user, but also require a secondary notification and opt-in for any data exchange, ensuring a privacy first user experience.

 

Ready to monetize your app? Request your invitation to participate in Placed Affiliate.

 

 

 

Do You Showroom? Study Reveals New Insights into Showroomers’ Shopping Habits

Showrooming: The word that strikes fear into the hearts of brick-and-mortar retailers as shoppers take to their aisles only to buy for a cheaper price online. In our new study, Placed: Aisle to Amazon, we take an in-depth look at where these showroom-savvy consumers shop, revealing which retailers should be most wary of this growing trend.

 

Males vs. Female Showroomers

One of the key findings from the study highlighted the differences between male and female showroomers and the brick-and-mortar stores they were likely to visit.

 

  • Best Buy took the top spot for males who were 39% more likely to visit the electronics store than the average U.S. consumer, while Kohl’s led for Females at 49%.
  • For Male showroomers, the #2 and #3 retailers they were most likely to visit were held by home improvement retailers The Home Depot (24%) and Lowe’s (23%), with Sears landing the #4 spot at 22% and Costco securing the #5 position at 20%.
  • Females saw PetSmart (47%), Bed Bath & Beyond (46%), Marshall’s (44%) and Old Navy (38%) round out the top five.

Download your copy of the full study: Placed: Aisle to Amazon

Male vs. Female Showroomers

 

 

 

5 Things You Need to Know About Location Measurement

Location measurement is more than just knowing a latitude and longitude point. In fact, assigning the closest place to a latitude and longitude point results in an incorrect match of place to a user’s location in more than 90 percent of cases – just one of the findings revealed in our latest white paper, Measuring Offline Consumer Behavior: Understanding the Foundation of Location Measurement and Analytics.

 

This report takes a look at the science, challenges and opportunities behind location analytics and what this emerging field means for companies seeking customer insights and competitive intelligence from location data. Here’s a look at five key takeaways from the report:

 

  • Location + Place = Foundation of Analytics: Location measurement involves two equally important and complex components: location data collection and accurate place assignment.
  • “Smart” Data Collection: Cell tower signal, Wi-Fi and GPS are the primary methods of collecting location data via smartphones. GPS provides the most accurate location measurement with an average accuracy range of 5 to 30 meters. Sensor data, such as a smartphone’s accelerometer, compass and gyroscope, are another important set of factors used to determine a user’s movement in the physical world.
  • Optimized for Battery Life: Although GPS provides the most accurate location data, it is the most battery intensive and thus has the most potential to negatively affect user experience. Placed has devised intelligent algorithms optimized for battery life, utilizing sensor requests to determine the best time to collect high-quality data. In an experiment, using optimized algorithms resulted in battery drain of 2% per hour compared to 11% drain when not optimized.
  • Meta Makes the Model: Place databases are noisy and studies have shown this noise makes a significant impact on accuracy. In 9 of 10 cases, assigning the closest place to a latitude and longitude point results is the wrong match of place to a user’s actual location when depending solely on database information. The Placed inference model leverages metadata, such as time, demographic affinity, business popularity, name normalization and business category, to significantly improve assignment accuracy and yield more actionable analytics for clients.
  • Privacy Focused, Privacy Forward: Best practices for location data collection are transparent and keep consumers’ privacy at the core of their methodology.  Placed has pioneered an explicit, triple opt-in approach to location measurement that beats industry standards.

To read the full report, please visit: Measuring Offline Consumer Behavior: Understanding the Foundation of Location Measurement and Analytics.

Who’s Keeping their New Year’s Resolutions? The Truth Told by Location Data

The transition into the New Year sees some of the most significant shifts in consumer behavior. It’s the end of the holiday season and the beginning of a new year, which often means making resolutions to improve and change our lives. But just how much does the change in year actually change consumers’ physical-world behaviors? We analyzed Placed location data to find out how the New Year is impacting where people go. The results we uncovered might surprise you.

 

By aggregating and normalizing data collected from Placed Panels, we were able to determine the places people were more and less likely to visit based on the category’s share of place.  Category share of place is defined as the proportion of visits to a place during January 1 – 14, 2013 compared to the proportion of visits in December 2012.

 

Here’s a look at the results:

 

  • In January, Religious Centers captured 70% more share of place compared to December, which one could hypothesize is influenced by people resolving to be more active in their religious communities in 2013.
  • The quintessential resolution to get fit caused Gyms & Fitness Centers to increase their share of place by 23% in the first two weeks of January.
    • The YMCA, Planet Fitness and Gold’s Gym saw the largest relative gains in visits during the start of the New Year.
  • Not only were people resolving to take better care of themselves in the New Year, but they were also more likely to take care of their vehicles. Share of visits to retailers specializing in automotive (excluding dealers) increased by 14% in the New Year.
  • Surprisingly, Restaurants, including Fast Food, accounted for a slightly higher share of place in January as diet resolutions seemed to do little in affecting restaurant behavior.
  • Some of steepest drops in share of place among Shopping categories included:
    • Supermarkets & Groceries:  -8%
    • Computers and Electronics:  -14%
    • Discount & Wholesale Stores: -24%
    • Department Stores: -30%
    • Clothing and Accessories:  -43%
  • Perhaps as a result of too many holiday parties and more health-conscious resolutions, the Arts, Entertainment and Nightlife category, which includes visits to bars, clubs, etc., decreased its share of place by 26% in January.

Location Data New Year's Resolutions

 

This rich location information into consumers’ actual physical-world behavior gives companies new competitive intelligence to gauge performance against their entire industry and specific competitors. For instance, Kroger could determine if a decline in store traffic in January is an industry trend or isolated to their stores. Knowing this can fundamentally change their approach to driving store traffic and increasing sales.

 

Further, understanding the ebbs and flows of consumer behavior creates actionable insights for retailers. The 14% uptick in activity to automotive stores (non-dealers) identifies an opportunity for retailers such as Walmart, Costco, and Sears to capture share of place by strategically running promotions for their auto services and supplies.

 

Placed is changing the way location data is understood by providing transparency into the migratory patterns of consumers. With this intelligence, companies can better understand trends within their industries, gauge performance against specific competitors and look for new opportunities to leverage shifts in consumer behavior to drive people into stores and through the checkout lines – helping marketers uncover new sources of revenue in the New Year.