Published on August 22nd, 2012 | by Derek Overbey1
Social Local Mobile: What is it & How Does it Impact My Business?
You may or may not be familiar with the term SoLoMo. If you’re not, don’t worry because the term was just recently coined. An offshoot of Hyperlocal Search, SoLoMo stands for Social-Local-Mobile. Greg Sperling provided the best explanation of SoLoMo in a January 12, 2012 article via Mashable:
“‘Hyperlocal search’ may be dying, but the phenomenon is evolving and becoming more mobile,” says Greg Sterling, senior analyst with San Francisco-based consultancy Opus Research. “SoLoMo is a more mobile-centric version of the same concept with greater local precision: It’s about getting nearby information on demand, wherever you may be.”
So, aside from sounding funny as it comes out of your mouth, how does SoLoMo translate in the real world? Most people might be experiencing SoLoMo and not even realize it. If you’ve shopped in the San Francisco Neiman Marcus recently and downloaded the NM Services app on your iPhone, as soon as you walk into the store, you’re engaged in the SoLoMo experience. Detailed in this March 2012 article from Internet Retailer, Neiman Marcus is taking the SoLoMo bull by the horns. The NM Services app is engaged when a customer’s phone is recognized by one of the in-store location sensors that are installed at key entry points. Once the app is engaged, the customer is alerted to which of his or her preferred sales associates are currently in the store, as well as upcoming store events, new product arrivals and sales, and emerging fashion trends.
That’s a fine and dandy example of a large business using cutting-edge technology to deepen the service level to its customers. But how does SoLoMo impact the corner bar or local restaurant that doesn’t have the resources and money to build an app? How can you take advantage of SoLoMo?
You can get in the game with existing consumer apps such as Foursquare. Our favorite local breakfast spot, Stacks, partnered with Foursquare and American Express for the benefit of their patrons. When you visit Stacks and check-in via Foursquare, you receive a rebate of $5.00 off of any total bill of $10.00 or more. This is an example of a local business rewarding their customers who use social applications on their mobile devices while visiting their establishment.
Will SoLoMo work for your business? Well, that depends on the type of business you have, and what you’re trying to accomplish. If you have a retail operation or local restaurant and you’re trying to build a tighter relationship with your patrons, then implementing SoLoMo into your business might be just what the doctor ordered.
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