How To Apply The Internet of Things (IoT) To Your Marketing Strategy

Marketers strive to find new, unexpected ways to communicate with clients. Internet of Things has become one of the “cool” elements of marketing strategy. Check out how top companies use IoT to engage customers and increase sales.

What is IoT?

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a concept where machines and everyday objects are connected via the Internet. Within the IoT, devices are controlled and monitored remotely and usually wirelessly. IoT applies different methods of communication like Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), iBeacons or QR codes. By 2025 the global worth of IoT technology is predicted to reach $6.2 trillion.


How Marketers Use IoT

It may seem simple but developing relevant and effective marketing campaign based on RFID or iBeacons is not that easy. First off, IoT helps to connect everyday objects via the Internet, so it is useful mainly for the companies who want to increase their online presence but are based offline like retail stores, restaurants, etc. However, it doesn’t mean that online companies can’t use IoT effectively.

Top 10 examples of the use of IoT in marketing and business

1. Nike+ Shoes

nikeNike enables to track sports activity like running by applying a sensor that tracks your run and sends the data to your iPod. Nike has its own social network. It can also automatically publish a status report on Twitter or Facebook. I was considering this solution myself but finally decided to wait a bit longer and purchased Garmin ForeRunner with GPS.

2. EpicMix

EpicMix allows you to get more from the mountain. Not only you can track your vertical feet but also earn pins, join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter, view photos, download unlimited high resolution photos, compete at the EpicMix Race Course and many more.

3. Robbery-proof RFID chips in Bellagio Casino

Bellagio Casinos found the way to stop stealing chips by their customers. Thanks to RFID tags inside them, the chips ($100 and $200) can be immediately deactivated and impossible to redeem for cash value.

4. NFC Enabled Lexus Advertisement appears in Wired

Wired included an Near Field Communications (NFC) advertisement of Lexus in their 2012 issue. The full-page ad asked readers to place their NFC enabled phone near the page. Afer reading the tag, the phone’s web browser opened an URL which played a video describing the new Lexus Enform App Suite.

5. Nordstrom


Nordstrom, an American upscale fashion retailer is experimenting with IoT. The brand noticed that most purchase decisions are being made in the fitting room and added touchscreen mirrors (technology by eBay) to their stores. With the tap of customer’s finger, the full-length mirrors turn into interactive screens, effectively creating smart fitting rooms. Nordstrom, considered a technology leader among other retailers, plans to spend $1.2 billion on technology by 2018.


6. Macy’s

Not to fall behind, Macy’s the famous US department store has been experimenting with iBeacons. Customers who enter the store and had downloaded Shopkick app on their iPhones are alerted about deals and items they may be interested in.

7. SenseAware by FedEx

90829-013c_SSSenseAwareSM powered by FedEx is simply a solution that helps you monitor your shipment. Using a multi-sensor device, SensAware collects and transmits data from packages, trailers, and warehouses using wireless communication. You have 24/7 access to the information so you can handle situations as they arise.

8. Apple

ibeacon-131206Apple is using iBeacon technology in its US stores together with its Apple Store app. With iBeacons customers get notifications about their orders, phone upgrades, etc. when you are in a relevant part of the store. iBeacon transmitters use Bluetooth 4.0 tech, and can be dialed in to a range of different distance sensitivities. It can also provide general alerts to anyone who enters an Apple Store.

9. Budweiser “Buddy Cup”

Budweiser created “Buddy Cup” which allows you to make Facebook friends with a clink on your pint. The cups have chips inside. When clinked with each other, the two people would become friends on Facebook. The cups will be used during Budweiser events.


10. Hellman’s Interactive Shopping cart

Hellmans implemented interactive shopping carts in Brazil. Agency Cubocc used the insight that 70% of purchase decisions are made at the point of sale and created a campaign using intelligent supermarket trolley that interacts with other ingredients recognising them on the shelves and suggesting a new recipe using them and Hellman’s. The recipes are prompted the moment the client passes the product.