By Carlos Chang-Oracle on May 15, 2016
Authored by Suhas Uliyar, Oracle Vice President, Mobile Product Development
|One of the benefits of constant world travel is that I often have time between flights to shop for myself and my family, as today’s airports have turned into mini brick-and-mortar malls filled with top consumer brands. In fact, I once bought a complete set of business attire at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport when my plans changed and I had to head to London for a meeting instead of making my connection home. However, I, and many other travelers, have the perception that airport shopping is expensive; even more expensive than shopping in true brick-and-mortar malls. Imagine my excitement when Manchester Airports Group (MAG) engaged with Oracle’s mobile specialists to discover how MCS 2.0 with Location Based Services (LBS) could help to locate and engage MAG travelers and give them incentives and discounts on retail goods in MAG airport stores, thus counteracting the perception of expensive airport shopping!|
Manchester Airports Group is the largest UK-owned airport operator and over 48 million passengers move through its five airports each year. As MAG continues to add new routes and passengers, it has recognized that it must focus on improving the pre-flight and post-flight passenger experience. One way to accomplish this is to identify passengers within airports using LBS, and then to personalize their experiences as they make their way through MAG terminals. As Roger Westerbeek, Group Head of CRM & Loyalty, MAG puts it:
“The Manchester Airports Group (MAG) CRM strategy and subsequent customer engagement is firmly anchored in the core principles of right product to the right customer at the right time and through the right channel... We now recognise the significant shift to digital mobile and location relevancy. To address this change, MAG are now working with global leaders in location-based technology to communicate effectively with our customers on-estate.”
An Oracle Marketing Cloud customer, MAG was already using Eloqua email campaigns to promote car parking and airport fast track to passengers prior to their trips. However, MAG told us that it could identify less than 25% of the passengers who set foot on premise, and MAG had no ability to communicate with those passengers once they were in-terminal. Enter Oracle MCS 2.0, which MAG is using to provide location based services and mobile offers to its passengers on premise through the MAG mobile app. MAG’s goals are to improve passenger experience, to identify anonymous passengers, to drive penetration, and to increase incremental return and adjustable travel volume (ATV).
How is this accomplished? First, Oracle’s MCS 2.0 can measure both passenger footfall and passenger linger time, also known as “dwell time.” Second, MCS 2.0 uses existing Oracle Marketing tools to deliver mobile offers and promotions that can be segmented by time of day, customer profile, customer footfall and desired retail target. Finally, MCS 2.0 provides push notification capabilities so that information, offers, and promotions are delivered to each targeted passenger’s mobile phone. The end result is more informed and happier travelers, higher retail sales, improved operational efficiency, and increased in-terminal visibility.
Using MAG as an example, Oracle is working with our partner Estimote to install beacons in five areas of Manchester Airport Terminal 1: at Check-In, at Security, in the Departures Lounge, at the Boarding Gates and at Baggage Claim. When passengers arrive at Check-In, they will receive a push notification on their phones containing security information and advice. Depending on how long they spend in Check-In, they might also receive a push offer for fast track through Security. As they progress through Security, MCS will measure security transit time. Then, when passengers enter the Departures Lounge, they will get an airside “retail offer of the day” linked to their customer profile. Upon arrival at the Boarding Gates they will be asked for feedback on their experience through a short survey. Finally, on the return leg back to Manchester, passengers will be identified at Baggage Claim where they will receive offers for their next trip.
We are just beginning to scratch the surface in terms of this solution’s possibilities. Oracle and Estimote can imagine additional use cases where location services are used to assist airport staff in further improving operational efficiencies, and in identifying security risks before passengers reach Security. We also can imagine sharing the beacon infrastructure with third party mobile apps such as airlines or retailers in order to provide an even more robust passenger experience. The possibilities are endless, and through the use of Oracle’s Mobile Cloud Service and the Estimote Cloud, MAG will continue to grow while improving the passenger experience. I also finally can buy relevant retail products at cheaper prices, thanks to the new pushed offers at Manchester Airport!