Signal 360: Beacons, Their Progress And Issues

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We spoke with Alex Bell, CEO of Signal 360 about the rate of progress of beacons. When we last spoke with the company they were called Sonic Notify (“Beacons & Proximity Marketing – Sonic Notify” 5/31/14).

Bell characterizes the major issue for beacons as “customer readiness.” By this he means that while his company can deal with the technical issues and can make out a convincing case for the value of beacons, there still are myriad implementation issues at customers’ operational and administrative levels that are holding back large-scale rollouts.

These include issues regarding installation details and getting cooperation of various departments in a user organization.

The company’s progress includes a deal with a major retailer for a 1400-store installation. To move the business ahead Signal 360 has been flexible and in some instances has quoted deals on the basis of a fixed price per store. This can include the entire project, including installation. Thus it will assume the role of a system integrator as well as a system provider.

Another issue relates to the type of customer. While sports teams, for example, are high visibility accounts, the revenue per site is significantly lower than from major retailer sites.

Bell points out that the “stickiness” in the business will come from the ability of Signal 360’s CMS (content management system) software to work with the retailers’ CRM (customer relationship management) system. With access to knowledge about the individual shopper’s history and preferences, frequency and content of messages can be tailored to that individual.

The company has also been on a learning curve that includes: messaging frequency, placement of beacons, length of messages and related matters.

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Photo by Michael Davis-Burchat via Flickr
Podcast Narration by Gene Guerrero
Podcast Music “On the Ground” Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0