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Beacons Moving Into Jukeboxes In 20,000 Bars

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by Chuck Martin, Staff Writer Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017

Beacons are moving to bars. A lot of them

Following countless implementations of beaconing to interact with shoppers in various ways at retailers of all types, beacons are moving into thousands of bars across the U.S.

At CES this week, InMarket is introducing InBar, a new digital platform for entertainment venues, most notably, bars.

The proximity marketing company, which has been involved in beaconing since their beginnings, and AMI Entertainment, a company founded in 1901 and whose content delivery network touches more than 20 million U.S. consumers a month via jukebox music, games, interactive TV and mobile, have teamed to add beacons to in-bar jukeboxes for a new way to interact with consumers.

Beacons in jukeboxes will be rolling out to more than 20,000 entertainment locations in the U.S, said Todd Dipaola, CEO and Founder of InMarket. “There’s a huge media aspect to this,” since consumer targeting and advertising can be more tailored to an individual based on location.

Beacons in stores have been used to trigger smartphone messaging of various types as well as to passively collect behavioral data, such as traffic patterns and consumer dwell time in certain departments. Consumers must have Bluetooth enabled, have an app on their phone that links with a particular beacon and agree to receive messaging.

The reach of the InBar program has promise, since the beacons will be Eddystone compatible, meaning it can reach all Android mobile devices.

Beacons in jukeboxes promises to lead to other smartphone-based activities down the road. For example, drink ordering and mobile payments along with choosing your own theme song when entering a bar are on tap, according to Dipaola.

The jukebox beacons are more powerful than traditional beacons, since they’re USB-powered.

Basically, EMI Entertainment knows bars and InMarket knows beacons. Of course, this is not about the jukebox nor is it about the beacon, but rather yet another way to more relevantly interact with consumers based on where they are and what they likely are doing.

Here are some examples of how the beacon-equipped jukeboxes might be used to interact with people in the bar:

  • Smart jukebox suggests songs or offers credits
  • Safe rides home are suggested based on being in the bar three hours or more
  • Extra swipes in a dating app
  • Drink specials for checking fantasy football scores during the game
  • Exclusive playlists or AR/family filters just for being there

Beacon-triggered messaging has been growing up during countless trials and launches at major retail chains. Now they’re about to get involved in the nightlife of many of those consumers.

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