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Sports World Chicago’s sales double play assisted by micro-targeting

Sports World Chicago is driving both online and in-store sales while boosting social followers through its micro-targeting of Chicago sports fans at home and on the road.

The seller of Chicago Cubs licensed shirts, jerseys, hats and souvenirs is using Geofeedia to find fans who are near its store across from Wrigley Field in Chicago or in other cities at away games and compel them to purchase items while they are in the mindset to convert. Boosting the company’s social media presence to more than 28,000 followers on Facebook, 2,700 on Instagram, 1,400 on Pinterest and 1,300 on Twitter, the program points to mobile’s ability to drive social sharing and sales via a live event tied to an offer.

“Digital engagement through social media channels to a consumer’s mobile phone impacts their behavior and experience,” said Phil Harris, CEO of Geofeedia. “If you deliver a relevant and actionable offer, it can impact a consumer’s behavior to drive sales and even more, they will share it with their followers.”

Rich pictures
The Geofeedia platform allows marketers to identify real-time who is in a location and what their experience is because they are sharing on social networks. Besides tweets, they share rich pictures and videos of their experiences.

Geofeedia identifies consumers across seven social media platforms – Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Picasa, Flikr, YouTube and Sina Weibo. It requires no installation of hardware or software because it leverages apps people are using on their mobile phones.

The program allows marketers to place a perimeter around any stadium, game location, or city and begin gathering real-time social data within seconds. Geofeedia’s Streamer view gives the user a quick-hit, snapshot of social activity in real-time.

Sports World Chicago can find fans who are near a store, or in other cities at away games, and give them compelling reasons to purchase – either from the nearby store or online – while they are in a mood to buy.

The key is to find the people who are most likely to purchase and give them compelling incentives. In Sports World Chicago’s case, that often means limited-time-offer discounts that drive people to the store, and fun promotions that are tied to live game activity.

About 80 percent of the driven conversions involve in-store purchases; the other 20 percent drive ecommerce.

Sports World Chicago’s Web site.

When a fan watches a Cubs game at Wrigley Field, he shares a picture on Instagram with his friends.

The program identifies that the fan is at the game having fun. Its social media manager feature sends the fan a compelling time-sensitive offer for the purchase of Cubs sports gear at the store.

If the fan goes to the store after the game with several buddies, odds go up that the fan and at least one friend will take advantage of the offer. If the fan shares the offer with 1,800 of his Instagram followers, several of whom are at the game, more purchases could result.

Although Sports World Chicago was no stranger to social media and was already active on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest, it had no clear way of knowing which keywords and hashtags were relevant and whether social media users were near the store.

Engaging the right people at the right time on social was even harder during away games. “I was tired of guessing at hashtags,” said Brad Rosen, a partner of Sports World Chicago, in a case study from the company. “There had to be a better way.”

Geofeedia let Sports World Chicago draw search perimeters around key locations such as Chicago ball parks, fields, and stadiums, away-game venues and spring training camps.

Paving way
That move paved the way for discovering, engaging with and analyzing real-time social media data by location—not just hashtags or keywords.

 Identifying consumers across seven social media platforms.

Sports World Chicago’s experience with Geofeedia points up a key strength of social and mobile tools for smaller retailers and other businesses – they can deliver deep impact while being cost-effective. The company’s Geofeedia experience involved only the cost of the program.

“The viral sharing that can happen is incredibly powerful,” Mr. Harris said.

Final Take
Michael Barris is staff reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York