Do you think this can work?

18 replies
Imagine you are a store owner in a mall, it's not rush hours, your store is almost empty and you need customers right now. You wish you had a powerful vacuum cleaner that could suck all the people walking around into your shop

I am not working on that magical vacuum cleaner, but on an app that can broadcast special time limited deals in a 100 meter radius circle around the spot where the device is installed.

Store owners will have an iPad app that shows a map with moving dots (nearby walkers), they can select a number of people based on their profiles and broadcast a time limited offer (few minutes to less than two hours),

Here is my business model:
- The app will be 100% free for users.
- It will also be free for businesses broadcasting up to 3 deals per day, then 1$ per deal
- EDIT: (marketing) stores will receive free recyclable bags with their logos in one side, and instructions to download the app on the other side
- EDIT: Stores will also receive a free bluetooth transmitter that broadcast iBeacons

I am actively developing the app and the technology behind, but I have not contacted it any business about it yet. so my question is; do you think this could work?
#ibeacon #mobile #offline #work
  • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
    Cool idea.

    I think you should give 3 free deals per week. Not per day.

    Will people need to have an app installed for it to work? I am guessing so. If so, will you need to land a deal with the mall to promote the app?

    If you can get the mall on board to place signs all around, and get all the merchants to use it, you might be onto something.

    In fact, if you can sell your first few malls on the deal, you might be able to get them to fund the build. Let their merchants use it free forever.

    There are thousands of malls and outlets to make deal with if you can get the initial app off the ground with some stats.

    EDIT: A few more thoughts on how I think you should proceed. (I have participated in the launch of several tech products)

    First - don't start building the app yet. Figure out your sales process before anything else. Create your GUI. Create your marketing collateral. Get your nice website. Don't say anything at all about "coming soon" - build this whole thing out as if it already exists as a service to mall owners.

    Second - Help the malls with a roll out process. Develop signs, banners, and promotional material - just get the designs, don't actually create them in real life.

    Third - Sell this to the mall as a fully custom standalone product for a set fee. "For $X you get all these benefits - delivery time is 12 weeks."

    Get the first mall to pay you up front - take a loss on the deal if necessary. You are building the first prototype. Then work your ass off to get all the stores on board.

    After this, you will have a model that be reused over and over.
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    • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
      Originally Posted by DaniMc View Post

      Cool idea.

      I think you should give 3 free deals per week. Not per day.
      The app will start 100% free lifetime for the first enrolled stores; once the app is established in a part of the mall, I will figure out the perfect number with trial and errors

      Originally Posted by DaniMc View Post

      Cool idea.

      Will people need to have an app installed for it to work? I am guessing so. If so, will you need to land a deal with the mall to promote the app?
      Yes, an app is required for this to work. to promote the app, I'll be offering free recyclable bags to sotres with their logo in once side and my app on the other side.
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  • Profile picture of the author Yvon Boulianne
    This is very interesting
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    • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
      At what point do you get the prospective customer's permission to deliver an advertisement?
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      • Profile picture of the author sconer
        Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

        At what point do you get the prospective customer's permission to deliver an advertisement?
        When that customer downloads the app.

        The next question is: why would someone download an app that is going to annoy them with ads?

        People use ad-blockers, they record live TV so they can fast forward thru commercials, they use Do Not Call lists and scream at telemarketers. So why would they voluntarily download something that is going to make their phone beep with advertisements while they are carrying bags thru the mall?
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        • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
          Originally Posted by sconer View Post

          When that customer downloads the app.

          The next question is: why would someone download an app that is going to annoy them with ads?

          People use ad-blockers, they record live TV so they can fast forward thru commercials, they use Do Not Call lists and scream at telemarketers. So why would they voluntarily download something that is going to make their phone beep with advertisements while they are carrying bags thru the mall?
          My wife has several local discount apps that shoot deals to her.
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          • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
            Originally Posted by DaniMc View Post

            My wife has several local discount apps that shoot deals to her.
            The tech development is the easiest part of this. I think the best advice you could give to the OP would be how your wife was sold on installing the app. Did she see in-store signage? Did the clerk present it? Was it on their website? Etc...
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            • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
              Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

              The tech development is the easiest part of this. I think the best advice you could give to the OP would be how your wife was sold on installing the app. Did she see in-store signage? Did the clerk present it? Was it on their website? Etc...
              all the above, plus:

              - free bags with the store logo and instructions to download the app
              - free promotional materials and maybe google ads

              later in the process, I will upsell the store on most of the things above, (thinks about websites, mobile apps, .....)
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          • Profile picture of the author sconer
            Originally Posted by DaniMc View Post

            My wife has several local discount apps that shoot deals to her.
            The OP isn't talking about Groupon or Target here...
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            • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
              Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

              The tech development is the easiest part of this. I think the best advice you could give to the OP would be how your wife was sold on installing the app. Did she see in-store signage? Did the clerk present it? Was it on their website? Etc...
              Originally Posted by sconer View Post

              The OP isn't talking about Groupon or Target here...
              Here is an example.

              http://www.thecouponsapp.com/

              There are lots of these. Push notification pops up.

              I think she saw an online ad maybe. Not sure.

              This concept is not much different - it's just to people in a particular location. There are several apps that do this based on location. You drive past a store with an active deal, and push notifications show up with special offers.
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              • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
                Originally Posted by DaniMc View Post

                Here is an example.

                The Coupons App: #1 Most Popular Download For Retail Coupon Codes, Promo Codes, Discounts

                There are lots of these. Push notification pops up.

                I think she saw an online ad maybe. Not sure.

                This concept is not much different - it's just to people in a particular location. There are several apps that do this based on location. You drive past a store with an active deal, and push notifications show up with special offers.
                The difference is that you don"t need a contract between you and groupon or the couponsapp the advertise deals (plus you don't share your earning with them)

                When you get the app, you have full control on the deals that you broadcast and the people you want to send them to.
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        • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
          Originally Posted by sconer View Post

          When that customer downloads the app.

          The next question is: why would someone download an app that is going to annoy them with ads?

          People use ad-blockers, they record live TV so they can fast forward thru commercials, they use Do Not Call lists and scream at telemarketers. So why would they voluntarily download something that is going to make their phone beep with advertisements while they are carrying bags thru the mall?
          I agree with those sentiments. Marketplace sophistication levels are high, especially when it comes to those that are installing apps on their mobile devices. Unless it's a well known brand or entity, skepticism is a big hurdle to jump for small local businesses that simply don't have and will never have a brand name.

          It's one reason why i feel mobile optimized websites are a better solution path.
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      • Profile picture of the author DABK
        It seems the app will be about nothing but deals. So, if you download it, that's when you'd be agreeing to receive the info.

        I think it's a great idea. I'd do a wider range, based on the size of some of the malls around here... and the huge parking lots.

        The trick is getting people to download the app.



        Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

        At what point do you get the prospective customer's permission to deliver an advertisement?
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      • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
        Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

        At what point do you get the prospective customer's permission to deliver an advertisement?
        Originally Posted by sconer View Post

        When that customer downloads the app.

        The next question is: why would someone download an app that is going to annoy them with ads?

        People use ad-blockers, they record live TV so they can fast forward thru commercials, they use Do Not Call lists and scream at telemarketers. So why would they voluntarily download something that is going to make their phone beep with advertisements while they are carrying bags thru the mall?
        I myself hate ads like thte plague and I won't allow any kind of ads on it. I think also about disabling notifications as they can become very annoying.

        the idea behind the app is simply to receive very special offer from a store that is just around the corner, for example: "hey James, your coffe is on us if you come in the next hour. we are two blocks away - starbucks" (maybe if you are with friends, you will drag them with you and they will spend the hard cash)
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  • Profile picture of the author floydarthur
    Well, try it. You will learn in the process. It's interesting, so what are you waiting for? Someone might copy your idea.

    Floyd Arthur
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  • Profile picture of the author bojan92
    I think it is brilliant idea. Go right ahead. This is one of the most innovative things I have red so far.
    I wish you nothing but success. No remarks at all. Cheers.
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  • Profile picture of the author np2014
    Banned
    It's a unique idea for sure but what exactly is an app? Would anyone want one even if it was given away for free? Wouldn't everyone in the 100 metre radius have to firstly own, and secondly be walking around with an ipad in order to be alerted?

    It's very futuristic and although I don't understand the technology its clearly very scalable. 5 deals broadcast per day at 100 malls is $15,000 a month.
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  • Profile picture of the author Oziboomer
    Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

    Imagine you are a store owner in a mall, it's not rush hours, your store is almost empty and you need customers right now. You wish you had a powerful vacuum cleaner that could suck all the people walking around into your shop

    I am not working on that magical vacuum cleaner, but on an app that can broadcast special time limited deals in a 100 meter radius circle around the spot where the device is installed.

    I am actively developing the app and the technology behind, but I have not contacted it any business about it yet. so my question is; do you think this could work?
    Something like this is already out there.

    Have a read of this thread to find out about "the meat pack"

    http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...ting-down.html
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