Retailers must offer a 'compelling value proposition' for beacons to succeed, says Westfield Labs SVP Ben Taylor

Retailers and brands must offer consumers a “compelling value proposition” if they want to motivate shoppers to download apps and engage with emerging technologies such as beacons, according to senior vice president of Product at Westfield Labs Ben Taylor.

Speaking at the IPM Digital Disruption conference in London, Taylor said that to overcome the barrier that requires shoppers to voluntarily download apps, retailers must make it clear what is on offer in a simple way.

“There needs to be a compelling value proposition,” he remarked. “The consumer has a multitude of choices, and we need to collaborate with retailers and ensure that it’s clear for the consumer and it's secure for the consumer.”

Taylor drew on an example of a recent collaboration at Westfield London with Paypal, which let shoppers use the PayPal app to pay for car parking with their smartphone and said that what made the initiative a success was its simplicity.

“It was an easy to understand product. If you put these together it rewards them [the consumer] and encourages them to download the app.”

Sparking curiosity with visual cues is another way to help the implementation of beacons and NFC technology succeed in the retail environment, according to Daniel Angel, director of mobile marketing company Tamoco, who was also speaking at the event.

Tamoco is currently working with One Stop to facilitate downloads of a new app that enables shoppers to receive discounts for IPC Media magazines Chat, Pick Me Up, Woman and TV & Satellite Week direct to their smartphone when they enter their local store.

The initiative kicked off on 1 September and the aim is to push the relevant magazine to shoppers using first and third-party data based on browsing habits.

“Curiosity is another point," he said. "So using visual cues; things like digital screens, and using physical real estate to pave the way of discovering digital content. There's also a point around discovery and context and relevancy, so not just sending the same thing to all of the people all of the time, but putting out a relevant, targetted message to the consumer.”