Why Can’t My Driver Find Me? Dissecting Location Accuracy on Mobile Devices

If you’ve ever used a rideshare app in central Boston, you may have experienced the frustration of seeing your driver going in circles, unable to locate you. As a historical city, parts of Boston have streets that resemble a clump of spaghetti — narrow and very close together. And this makes it very difficult for a smartphone’s navigation app to figure out which street you are on.

WeWork Uses Location to Understand Location

WeWork has been leading the charge for shared workspaces around the globe, opening 203 office locations across 50 cities in just seven years, and in an era of booming technology and entrepreneurship they don’t plan to slow down anytime soon.

Measurement Matters: Recapping MoPub’s Measurement Mixer at DMEXCO

Last week at DMEXCO, I had the pleasure of speaking at the MoPub #MeasurementMixer on behalf of Factual. The panel consisted of Moat and Grapeshot, in addition to Factual, and was moderated by Meridith Miller of MoPub.

Amidst the lively conversation and thought-provoking questions, a few key themes arose:

Measurement Defined
Measurement is the impact of your mobile marketing investment… quantified. It is the cumulative value of the outcomes that result –– both directly and indirectly –– from your mobile marketing. This includes revenue impact (even if estimated by proxy). It should also include brand measures, like increased brand awareness, favorability, or even loyalty.

Of course, Measurement strategies should reflect the goals of the business, so the relative value of these outcomes will vary from business to business. This prioritization should be an active and considered effort.

In-App Inventory Is Modernizing Measurement
Measurement on desktop and mobile web is fundamentally flawed, because it relies on a cookie. The “cookie” is a terrible identifier; it is the tomato of consumer identity. Much like tomatoes –– which begin to rot before you get them out of the shopping bag and into your salad –– cookies go bad fast.

If I had two laptops and use two browsers for each, measurement solutions on desktop and mobile web would credit any conversions to one of four separate cookies (and you won’t know that those four cookies all belong to me). For smart marketers measuring lifetime value, this is worse than meaningless… it’s false data.

In-app inventory (on the other hand) relies on the Device ID, which is a relatively persistent identifier. Mobile in-app inventory provides a location signal that represents a mobile device user’s movement in the physical world. This location signal is actionable almost immediately.

There are a couple characteristics that make a Device ID special. As mentioned earlier, a Device ID is relatively persistent. It is also non-PII, so it carries less privacy risk for marketers, which sets it apart from another “holy grail” contender: purchase data (which relies on credit card info).

Thanks to mobile in-app inventory, marketers can now accurately and efficiently attribute offline conversion events (like real world store visits) to cross-channel media impressions while still respecting consumer privacy.

Effective Measurement Requires Offline Conversions
If you’re only considering online activity, you have an incomplete view of the customer’s journey. And if you’re only considering digital conversions in your performance metrics, you’ve got an incomplete understanding of the real impact of your ad spend.

There’s a reason Amazon is opening brick and mortar bookstores: stores still matter. According to the US. Census Bureau, brick and mortar sales accounted for 92.3 percent of retail sales in the first quarter of 2016. And stores are actually preferred by many consumers… across generations.

According to a recent report1, over half of millennials (especially younger ones, ages 20-23) actually prefer shopping in physical stores to shopping online. So if the preferences of younger consumers are any indication, stores will continue to make up the majority of sales in the foreseeable future.

Exploring the Challenges of Location Data Privacy

The internet is buzzing with the changes that iOS11 and Android Oreo bring to location data privacy. In iOS11, a prominent blue bar may appear when an app is using GPS to get a location fix, making it very easy to figure out if an app is doing higher fidelity location tracking in the background, without providing end-user value. In addition, iOS11 will also give the user more options and flexibility in location permissions. Instead of “Always On” or “Never,” users can also select “While Using App.” Android O takes a slightly different approach towards the same end, by limiting the number of background location requests to just a few per hour.

3 Steps to Fight Location Fraud with Factual

Mobile continues to sit at the forefront of marketing strategies, and location has increasingly become the core building block for successfully reaching niche audiences. But in the location data landscape, “X” doesn’t always mark the spot.