Groupon has partnered with mobile network JiWire to take its daily deals platform from a city-wide ad platform to zeroing in on specific neighborhoods.
JiWire offers the ability to target mobile display ads to users in a geo-fenced area (define), as well as a range of products based around its network of more than 30,000 public Wi-Fi hotspots (airports, coffee shops, college campuses, etc.) and partnerships with 40 network providers. According to the company, its ads reach more than 40 million people a month.
Groupon, which has had little problem drumming up business from local advertisers, now seems poised to explore numerous new avenues – literally. David Staas, SVP at San Francisco-based JiWire, told ClickZ the daily deals platform would become “much more hyper-local” in an upgrade that will be available to advertisers next quarter.
“[Groupon] was already moving into a more local approach with their daily deals,” he said. “We are able to connect with individuals…to a much more neighborhood level.”
Neighborhood-targeted daily deals will be available via ads served to consumers using Wi-Fi in restaurant and hospitality establishments. In short, JiWire’s network will be able to identify where such laptop, iPad, and mobile phone users are. Therefore, East Villagers in Manhattan, NY, can be served different deals than Upper West Side dwellers.
“We can take it down to that level,” Staas said. “When people are connected via Wi-Fi, they are connected through very specific venues. And you know the location of that venue, whether it’s a hotel, a coffee shop, or a university. So, you’ll know if people are connecting on the east side of Manhattan vs. the west side.”
While the targeting ability should interest local businesses, travel-oriented quick-serve chains like Sbarro, Cinnabon, and Au Bon Pain would also seem to be potential advertisers due to Groupon’s new JiWire targeting ability at airports. The partnership was first reported last night by TechCrunch as an effort dubbed “Groupon Everywhere.”
Julie Mossler, spokesperson for the Chicago-based Groupon, confirmed the arrangement with ClickZ via e-mail today. “Yes, we’re working with JiWire, but I don’t have anything to add beyond that,” she said.
Meanwhile, JiWire also comes with recently upgraded local advertising capabilities that could aid the Groupon partnership. Two weeks ago, it acquired mobile technology firm NearbyNow in order to create ad products that go beyond the “check-in.”
NearbyNow’s technology is designed to allow brands to present users with retail-related, location-based information, such as whether or not products/services are available at a nearby store or outlet. It then lets users reserve inventory to pick up later. The company had focused its technology on retailers, but JiWire says it intends to adapt it to provide opportunities to advertisers across other verticals.