Taking Advantage of Mobile for Offline Commerce


As a follow up to my post from last week about MATI 2014, I’ll expand a little further on the insights and success stories discussed by Gavin Marshell, Head of Digital Enablement at Europe, SAB Miller. Gavin talked about the importance, in today’s virtual reality, of reaching local markets with an offline product. His speech revealed how their main income source derives from sales in local pubs, or as he referred to it – on-trade market. Not only that, but most of Miller’s sales are from local beer.

“You’re not a real country if you don’t have your own beer.”

Gavin described how, since the global economic crisis began, customers have become more wary in parting with their money and so prefer to drink at home rather than going out to pubs.

On the other hand, the virtual market seems to be thriving. People are not going out as much as they used to, but they still spend their money online. The mobile arena is also rapidly increasing its engagement. People are calling this The Mobile Decade. So here’s the challenge:

How do you harness the power of mobile and the virtual world, in order to make more money in the offline world?

Miller’s solution was fairly simple – they give free WiFi in local pubs. To use this free WiFi, you need to register and, at the same time, opt in or out of receiving special offers from Miller. Now, let’s say you’re in a pub, what are the odds you’d say no to free internet? Do these odds narrow further when you’re offered a coupon for discounted drinks in that same pub? It’s a win win situation really.

Another interesting campaign Gavin shared with the audience at MATI 2014, was the setup of a local football game in which the audience was an active participant. People could choose the players in the match, they could comment on performance and everything via a mobile app. This gave Miller massive exposure and direct access to potential customers through their mobile device. Not to mention the beer that was sold in the actual venue of the match.

The main points I took from Gavin Marshell’s talk were – allowing yourself to think big and the importance of mobile targeting and engagement in any big campaign.


About the Author -

Natalie Halimi is the Head of Marketing Communications & Education at SimilarWeb. With over 10 years of experience in marketing, Natalie has promoted services and products in the B2C and B2B arenas, in various industries.

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