Location Data Isn’t Just for Advertising. Here Are 5 Ways to Use It to Grow Your Business.

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    When you think of location data, you probably think of proximity ads that suggest a cup of coffee when you’re near a Starbucks, or offer a discount on bowling when you walk by the local bowling alley. While it’s true that location data informs and fuels an ever-growing raft of advertising and marketing initiatives, what’s often overlooked is the broader, strategic business power that location data can provide — beyond advertising.

    Since you probably already rely on many other data sets to inform your strategic business decisions, consider adding location data — the places consumers go and the events they attend — to the mix. Worries about concerns like user privacy and data quality are valid: Know that it’s important to source location-informed insights from opt-in data that is thoroughly cleansed and, most importantly, aggregated and anonymized (the Location Search Association recently published a valuable landscape report analyzing the key providers in the space). Be sure to work with a data provider that adheres to emerging industry best practices, including use of data sourced only from apps with specific user opt-in (like Apple is now mandating), and complies with country-specific regulations, like GDPR.

    The power of location insights stretches from macro to micro: You can tap into actionable intelligence, trends and patterns at 35,000 feet — or get granular, narrowing it down to a distinct geofenced location. Whether you zoom in or out, location data provides the richest source of information about consumers, telling the stories of where they go and what they do there. Armed with these insights, you can better understand the markets in which you operate, the behaviors and motivations of your customers, communities and prospects, foot traffic patterns around neighborhoods, and benchmark against your competition.