Square Deepens Marketing Solution, Ties Email To Sales Data

SquareTwitter founder Jack Dorsey’s payment startup Square is moving farther up the funnel.

Known mainly as a lightweight mobile payment processor for boutique mom-and-pop stores and taxi cabs, Square on Tuesday rolled out Square Marketing, a product that will fit in to its growing set of Customer Engagement tools for small and midsize businesses (SMBs).

Square Marketing is designed to “add context to a typically anonymous channel,” said a company spokesperson. “With contextual marketing, you might invite loyal customers to a Friends and Family event or maybe re-engage lapsed customers with a special deal.

It’s closing the loop for brick-and-mortar businesses by showing campaign ROI and tying email marketing back to real-world sales data.”

While traditional email marketing systems may improve open rates, Square says its marketing platform is intended to tie metrics like email delivery rates to in-store sales and wrangle consumer point-of-sale patterns useful for SMB marketing.

“Because we’re a POS system and a marketing tool in one, we are able to offer our businesses features [like] pre-populated lists of customers that businesses already have a relationship with [and] organized lists – whether loyal, casual or lapsed – so businesses can target the right audience with the right message,” said the spokesperson. 

Because SMBs sometimes struggle with big marketing technology deployments due to cost and implementation, affordability is crucial. Square Marketing can be used via a pay-as-you-go model at $.10 per email or a flat $15 for unlimited emails across 500 customers.

Square claims merchants have already seen significant return. For instance, merchants piloting the solution tailored promotions to “repeat visitors” or “frequent spenders” saw redemption rates that were twice the industry average. Square attributed $1 million in sales to those who piloted Square Marketing.

Square’s evolution into a marketing insights platform is partially due to its ubiquity – Square powers payments for more than 1 million SMBs.

The company already offers numerous marketing applications, like CRM tool Square Customer Insight, which aggregates customer information like average number of visits per customer per store and a breakdown of new vs. returning customers.

Square also has Square Feedback, which embeds content into digital sales receipts. Dorsey suggested Square's next steps included more data-driven developments around the digital receipt at the National Retail Federation show last winter.

Square is among a handful of mobile commerce and consumer platform companies eyeing the SMB marketer. Foursquare launched in late 2013 a self-serve platform called Foursquare Ads for SMBs while Twitter and Facebook have collectively courted small merchants with comparable self-serve tools.

Japanese ecommerce company Rakuten funded and later on acquired Slice Technologies, an ecommerce app that turns e-receipts into grounds for “next-best offers” based on past purchases.

 

 

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