Tesco launches biggest iBeacon trial with Magnum campaign

Tesco is launching its biggest iBeacon trial through Unilever’s “Pink and Black” campaign for its Magnum ice cream which will see London consumers receive discounted coupons when they pass one of 270 chosen Tesco stores.

The campaign from Dunnhumby, the data company behind Tesco’s Clubcard, will allow customers who download the “Mpulse” app to receive exclusive coupons for discounted Pink and Black Magnum ice cream when they pass by iBeacons located in 270 Tesco Express stores throughout London.

Discounts will also be delivered through push notifications powered by Urban Airship during the trial, which will run for three weeks.

Unilever and agency Karmarama developed the app as a pilot initiative in August last year to provide special offers to London consumers through its “StickNFind” beacons installed on a number of fridges in WH Smith stores.

Tony Reed, Tesco’s convenience managing director, said: “We’re constantly seeking new and exciting ways for our customers to shop with us and receive great offers. With summer on the way, we’re delighted to trial this concept and can’t wait to get our customers’ feedback.”

The move is another sign that Tesco is looking to mobile in order to provide more personalised offers.

In May it launched a mobile couponing trial in London, having previously trialled mobile payments at a number of its London stores.

It is also understood that the retailer is looking at ways to digitise its Clubcard loyalty programme to offer more relevant deals.

Retailers tapping into new technology

Neil Gledhill, Magnum’s global brand director, added: “We’re always looking at innovative ways to deliver on Magnum’s brand promise of delivering pleasure and to be able to do it at scale with a partner like Tesco is fantastic.”

Tesco and WH Smith are not the only retailers to tap into the rising popularity of iBeacons.

Last year Waitrose announced it was testing iBeacons at its concept store in Swindon to send in-store marketing messages to its customers as part of a series of trials of new technology aimed at improving the shopping experience and extending its relationship with customers beyond the check-out.

House of Fraser and John Lewis have also got on board.

However, at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Barclays head of mobile banking Darren Foulds said there is a strong likelihood consumers will be turned off by the nascent technology, which uses Bluetooth signals to send marketing messages to people’s smartphones according to their location in a physical space like a shop or event venue.

Paddy Power marketing manager Lucinda Kelly also voiced concerns about beacons, stating that the brand was currently unconvinced about its potential reach.

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