Monday, September 11, 2006

DoCoMo piloting in-mall location based marketing

Jan over at W2Forum has just written a post about NTT DoCoMo launching a mobile marketing system that uses RFID tags to work out what items you are browsing and send you accordingly information and offers whilst you're out and about to your mobile phone. So if you're looking in shoe shops, then your phone sends the tags out and by the time you get to shoe shop number 3, their server will reckon you're a bit tired and send you a message for a coffee shop.

The pilot will be running from 13th to 26th September (which isn't long enough for a pilot in my opinion). We also have to remember that they actually use RFID, QR codes and other fancy schmancy things with their phones which we think in the UK only exist in science fiction rather than sicence fact. And one hopes they've worked out how to handle data privacy issues (or maybe it's not the same issue in Japan as in the UK?). I also question whether or not they need the granularity of data to create an effective mobile marketing system. But I'm very excited they're doing something and look forward to seeing how it works out.

Of course the concept isn't new. We did something similar at ZagMe, albeit using text messaging, back in 2000/2001 at Lakeside and Bluewater Shopping Malls.