Beacon technology offers an enhanced guest experience

“Turn on your location services for a better experience,” is a rather common pop-up that flickers on our mobile phones, day in and day out. Taxi services, nearby theatres, and restaurants all recommend this. And it’s all done to ensure that the end-user gets the perfect experience and also to ascertain that the service provider finds its right audience. Beacons and geofencing are helping the industry achieve just this: the perfect consumer.

Kube Systems, which provides mobile device charging solutions, recently partnered with Gimbal to bring locationbased marketing to the guest room via the Kube Essentials multi-device charger. With this, hotels can offer customized notifications, messages, and promotions to customers’ mobile devices.

“Our goal is to help hotel marketers communicate to specific individuals with contextually relevant messaging. By connecting to the hotel’s mobile app—which includes the Gimbal SDK—we can send targeted offers to guests that will enhance their stay experience,” said Paul Malcangio, senior director of enterprise sales, Gimbal, in a press statement. “To our knowledge, no hotel today is using beacon technology in the guestroom,” claims vice president Dave Weinstein, Kube Systems.

“With some major hotel brands now using beacons in public spaces, we wanted to make available a unique solution that would enable the same technology to be deployed in guestrooms,” Weinstein said. “Today, any hotel running the Gimbal beacon in conjunction with their mobile app can place Kube Essentials in their guestroom. Not only will it add locationbased marketing services to the room, but it will give guests a place to charge all their mobile devices, including laptops.”

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Marriott will soon be launching real-time app messaging called mPlaces, which is based on its beacon-based LocalPerks program. mPlaces will debut later this year by greeting members with a personal welcome when they arrive at their hotel. Over time, Marriott will add more personalized and informative content based on data and driven by beacons now installed at over 500 hotels, stated a press release by Marriott in July. For example, members who typically work out while they travel would receive information about the location, hours, and services of the hotel fitness facility. Other future app features will enable members to order restaurant and room service menu items delivered wherever they are, such as lounging by the pool.

Hotels can send promotional messages about spas, restaurant offers for its members, or happy hours messages for the guests at the property through beacons.

Geofencing and beacon technology can boost the services at the property, as well. Hotels can send promotional messages about spas, restaurant offers for its members, or happy hour messages for the guests at the property through beacons.

Mobile marketing automation lets you be right there with your guests, in a sense. By triggering push messaging to their mobile devices based on geolocation or proximity to a beacon, you augment their experience with your property, your amenities, your brand, states an article by O’Rourke Hospitality, a hospitality marketing firm.

Golf outings, spa treatments, dinner deals, yoga classes, local area tours, pool parties, on-site concerts, happy hour alerts, pop-up promotions, limited-timeupgrades, extend-your-stay flash offers, are just a handfulof examples," O'Rourke says, “of what you might promote using a combination of geofences, beacons, and segmentation to achieve incremental revenue generation.”

Beacon Bluetooth Radio Transmitter

What is beacon? A beacon is a small Bluetooth radio transmitter. It's kind of like a lighthouse: it repeatedly transmits a single signal that other devices can see.

What is geofencing? The use of GPS or RFID technology to create a virtual geographic boundary, enabling software to trigger a response when a mobile device enters or leaves a particular area.

By Dhwani Pathak Dave