Office Depot, the retailer, is leveraging the power of location data to gain a deeper picture of customer habits and create more impactful messaging.

Darren Zap, Office Depot’s senior marketing manager/display and paid search, discussed this topic at the Association of National Advertisers’ (ANA) 2018 Data and Measurement Conference.

And he reported that a tie-up with Foursquare, the local search-and-discovery mobile app, has enabled the office-supplies company to develop a granular understanding of various subjects of importance to its business.

Foursquare “has become a strategic partner rather than someone coming to sell us a new service. And it’s a collaborative partnership that has helped us change the thinking of people within our organization,” he said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: How location-based media helped Office Depot recover from the brand abyss.)

Individual stores had been clamouring for ways to drive regional traffic, he continued, and found that location-based data could address customer needs with relevant creative messaging and provide insights on how to talk to customers.

“With the Foursquare [software] in place, we’re able to really understand how our high-valued customers are shopping, where they’re going before and after they make their purchases, what their behavioral interests are, and how we can speak to them,” Zap said.

A test program undertaken by Office Depot in the Great Lakes region effectively demonstrated the power of this location-based data as a business tool.

“We were seeing [a] decline in sales and struggling to understand why,” Zap said. To find an answer, Office Depot asked Foursquare to provide some answers.

“We began to understand patterns that we weren’t able to see through our own data,” Zap said. “We noticed that the local mall had shut down.

“We learned [and] understood from the Foursquare data that people had been coming to Office Depot as an additional trip after they had shopped at the mall. So, when they shut the mall down, we started to lose market share in that small area.”

Sourced from WARC