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5 Ways to Use iPad In Your Store for Marketing to Customers

The future of retail is all about in-store customer engagement through technology. Traditional brick-and-mortar stores are now competing with online storefronts which allow consumers to shop in their pajamas twenty-four hours per day, 7 days per week. Some retailers see the e-Commerce trend and have simply given up. The retailers who will survive and thrive in the future are the ones who realize that they too can leverage technology to provide value to consumers. Shopping online allows consumers to compare products and pricing in seconds, gives them the ability to review unlimited amounts of content about the product or service they are interested in, and even get feedback from friends prior to making a purchase. Retailers need to find ways to leverage technology to allow consumers to do all of those same things, and more, while in the retail store.

Tablets, like iPad, are the perfect tool for forward-thinking retailers who want to revamp the shopping experience for their customers. Until very recently, iPads have been seen as merely productivity tools for businesses. That meme is so 2010. Now, as we close out 2012 and get ready to head into 2013 we are seeing a new trend emerge, using iPad for marketing to customers. The potential for using iPad as a marketing tool in the retail environment is almost unlimited at this point. iPad is easy to use, lightweight, affordable for businesses, can connect to the internet, and quite frankly, iPads generate buzz — consumers are drawn to them. iPad is the perfect tool for retailers to use in their store for marketing to customers. iPad has the potential to level the playing field between traditional brick-and-mortar storefronts and online storefronts. Now, it’s all about finding creative ways to use iPads in retail stores to enhance the customer experience.

Run Contests In Retail Stores with iPad

How fun would it be to have an in-store scavenger hunt? What about letting your customers put on a fashion show in your retail store? There are so many fun contest ideas that you can execute with one simple tool, an iPad. Now, depending on your idea, you may have to develop an iPad app, which is a lot easier said than done. That said, we think that over the next 18 months there is going to be an explosion of third party iPad apps designed to help businesses use iPad for marketing to customers in store, so help is on the way! But think about it… What if there was an iPad app that allowed you to scan the barcode on one of your products and then add in a few hints that would be displayed on the iPad to customers. Customers would come up to the iPad, read the hints (maybe even unlock more and more hints based on how much information they are willing to share with you) and then go looking for the product. After finding the product that they think is the right one based on the hints they would then scan the barcode with the iPad. If they are correct they win a prize. If not, they either keep playing or possibly earn points for trying. Points can later be redeemed for discounts, etc. Talk about enhancing the customer experience! That would be so much fun.

Convert Shoppers into Social Media Connections for Your Business

Retailers who are currently using OnSpot Social + iPad in-store to collect social media connections are seeing fantastic results. One of our customers to converted over 400 shoppers into new social media connections for their business in one month. Think about that for a second. The Social Media Marketing trend is firmly in place with businesses, yet the biggest challenge retailers continue to have is building their online community. Except for established brands, you either have to spend a lot of money, or a lot of time if you want to be successful with social media marketing for your business. Now, with OnSpot Social & iPad there is finally a cost-effective solution to the biggest social media marketing challenge, growing your online community.

Launch an In-Store Loyalty Program Using iPads

Loyalty programs of the future will most likely involve tablets like iPad when it comes to executing them in a retail store. You could tie in a gaming component to this if you wanted. For example, consumers who frequent your store on a regular basis could walk up to your iPad Kiosk, type in their email address and be presented with a question of the day. That question could be anything that you wanted to find out about your customers. If an answer is provided the customer gets rewarded with points. After predefined thresholds are reached consumers would get rewarded for their loyalty with prizes, discounts, etc.

Allow Consumers to Comparison Shop in Your Retail Store with iPad

Here’s the easiest idea for using iPads in your store for marketing to customers, let them use iPads in your store to comparison shop. I know this sounds counter intuitive as you don’t want consumers to find a competitors’ product and miss out on a sale. That said, if you’re confident in your products and services, your pricing, and the value that you bring, this could be seen as the ultimate show of confidence. We are so confident that our products are the best, and we want you to be just as confident, that we are going to set up iPad Kiosks around our store for our customers to use to research our products versus our competitors’. This strategy allows consumers to get the same value when shopping at a brick-and-mortar store as they would when shopping online.

Educate Consumers About Your Products & Services through an iPad In Your Store

Last, but certainly not least, is using iPads in your store to show product content. Do you have product videos that are not being watched on your YouTube Channel? Do you have customer testimonials that show satisfied customers endorsing your services? Why not use iPads in your store to serve up this content to shoppers? Lebron James is doing it… What’s good for the King should be good for the rest of us, right? King James opened a retail store, UKNWN and he has over 20 iPads set up so that customers can watch product videos while they shop. Again, using technology in your store to provide consumers with the same opportunities to educate themselves prior to making a purchase as they would if they were shopping online.

What do you think about these 5 ideas? What ideas do you have? We hope you will take a minute to leave a comment below to let us, and other readers, know what you think about using iPads in your store for marketing to customers.

2 thoughts on “5 Ways to Use iPad In Your Store for Marketing to Customers”

  1. Good points! Regarding number 4, in-store comparison shopping, you bring up a good point about matching the online shopping experience. We know the retail reality of today is that tech-savvy shoppers bounce between the store and online and sometimes even comparison shop right from their own mobile device. So I can see how this could help counter the “showrooming” trend where shoppers visit brick-and-mortar to sample the product and then go online to buy. It could be especially helpful if the retailer offers price matching or other value propositions that make them the preferred retailer and easy choice.

    Of course I’m a little biased but I totally agree with number 5. iPad friendly product content can go such a long way in consumer education and engagement. We have clients that are creating instructional animations to demonstrate ease of product assembly, installation or use. These often include cutaway views to product inner workings and informational hot spots that provide additional info that one might usually have to track down a sales person or product spec sheet for. (Example So the iPad can come in handy with customers who want to explore on their own and as a tool in the salesperson’s hand. With smart content, the iPad can definitely be an asset for consumer education in-store.

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