Location intelligence company Blis has launched Blis Futures, an AI-powered mobile advertising product it says predicts consumers’ future whereabouts – and Belgian beer Stella Artois has signed on to use it to guarantee it sees new customers in bars.
According to a press release, Blis Futures uses machine learning and predictive analytics to group like data sets and identify patterns. It then builds audience segments based on predicted conversion rates and indicates when and where to target this group to achieve advertisers’ business objectives.
In other words, Blis said Blis Futures identifies consumers “who are guaranteed to be driven into a specific location, based on their historical trends.”
Gil Larsen, vice president of the Americas at Blis, said campaigns are broken into two parts: First, Blis runs a CPM portion that allows its AI to learn and detect the targeting setup that drives optimal foot traffic; Thereafter, Blis is able to tell advertisers which audiences will be targeted to drive optimum visitation and/or conversions.
Blis works with “mobile-provided location data” to define users’ geolocation, which Larsen said allows Blis to deliver mobile ads to these consumers as standard banner ads.
Further, Blis can check if the device targeted visits a specific location within a seven-day period, Larsen said.
“The benefit of our integration with Unacast means that the beacon network provides us with an extra layer of accuracy by allowing us to incorporate in-store beacon data,” he added. “This is in addition to our bid stream GPS data, enhancing our ability to identify which devices we drive to retail…that said, it’s all opt-in device IDs, meaning you have to have your location services turned on and opt in to share your location within the specific app.”
In addition, Blis said it will only charge advertisers using Blis Futures if the consumer targeted actually visits the target location, or what it calls a cost per visit model.
Per Larsen, a customer targeted by Blis who goes in to a store will be deemed a “successful conversion.”
“This allows us to minimize any media spend wastage for our clients,” Larsen added.
In a statement, Blis CEO Greg Isbister said, “Blis Futures allows brands and businesses the opportunity to target shoppers based on where they will be. We are now able to accurately identify people who we know are either highly likely or definitely going to buy a product. This eliminates waste in spend and increases campaign performance.”
Working with communications planning and media-buying network Vizeum, Stella Artois is the first brand to run a campaign using Futures – with the objective to drive footfall into bars, increase engagement and incite consumers to purchase, a rep said.
However, the rep said the company is not able to share additional details.
The campaign has been running since early March and will continue into mid-April, Larsen said.
“At Stella, it’s a crucial part of our mission to keep innovating to better understand our customers. Part of that is harnessing new technologies to engage with them in new ways,” said Ali Humphrey, brand manager at Stella Artois, in the release. “Thanks to Blis Futures, we are now able to recognize how our audiences behave in the real world as well as the digital one, allowing us to engage with them at the right moment…impacting their future purchase decisions.”
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