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Leverage Location-Based Marketing to Meet Rising Demand for Mobile Apps

By Evan Bakker | October 21, 2020 | 0 Comments

MarketingDigital Marketing Strategy and Execution

In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, mobile apps have become more important than ever as they meet the increased need for online shopping and contactless in-store experiences. Average app downloads among retail brands increased 41% year over year in the second quarter of 2020, giving marketers a mandate to dedicate resources to their mobile apps amid these platforms’ increasing prominence.

In order to gain a competitive edge and capitalize on rising app interest, organizations need to reach the widest possible audience. Marketers can achieve this by leveraging location-based push notifications through an operating system-native platform, which can help brands onboard a broader app customer base at scale. 

Quick service restaurant Jimmy John’s, for example, applies the concept of location-based mobile marketing to encourage further downloads of its brand app and associated loyalty program, Freaky Fast Rewards. For instance, the brand sends a geolocation-based push notification when a non-app user enters a franchise location. Such an iOS user, who is registered for Apple Pay but does not have a Jimmy John’s account online, sees a notification via the Apple Wallet app recommending the Jimmy John’s loyalty card after making a purchase with Apple Pay.

Opening the notification directs the user to the Wallet app, where they can download the brand’s app and expedite the loyalty sign-up process by toggling the automatic selection setting, which also links the brand’s digital loyalty card. Users can also opt to receive future notifications through this step. For customers who end up downloading the app, Jimmy John’s encourages repeat use by offering a free drink when an app user pays with Apple Pay and links the Freaky Fast Rewards digital loyalty card.

Through location-based messaging, Jimmy John’s can expand its potential app user base and look beyond traditional marketing levers like app store search ads. Meanwhile, the brand taps into an operating system-native platform, Apple Wallet, to scale its efforts and incorporate further utility. Other marketers must devise creative ways to reach the broadest possible audience and increase opportunities to convert offline shoppers to their mobile properties. 

The Gartner Blog Network provides an opportunity for Gartner analysts to test ideas and move research forward. Because the content posted by Gartner analysts on this site does not undergo our standard editorial review, all comments or opinions expressed hereunder are those of the individual contributors and do not represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management.

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