Venture Capitalist (Gray haired 50 year old ex banker): Why should we give 50 million bucks in funding to your startup with no customers and not a line of code written?
Hey Bro (From Khayelitsha…in Hoodie): “SoLoMo!”
According to Hootsuite, SoLoMo is the combination of three of the biggest trends among consumers: using social media (So); location-based relevance in both search intent and the use of the internet to find local products and services (Lo); and mobile adoption in which consumers tend to prefer to access apps and the internet through smartphones rather than desktops or tablets (Mo). More concisely, SoLoMo (social, local and mobile) is the convergence of collaborative, location-based and on-the-go technologies. The term is primarily used in marketing.
SoLoMo applications allows advertisers to push notifications to potential customers who are geographically nearby. Examples of SoLoMo applications include Foursquare, AroundMe and Yelp. Many of these services incorporate some aspects of gamification to encourage member retention. SoLoMo principles are increasingly being incorporated into search engine queries to deliver location-based results to users.
Techopedia explains SoLoMo
To understand SoLoMo, it is really necessary to understand several developments that brought it about. The first is that SoLoMo arose as a result of the popularity of smartphones and tablets that integrate geo-location technology. The GPS technology integrated into these devices provides more accurate geo results than the "IP mapping" approach necessary for home or office PCs. Also, big search engines are recognising that there is a large - and virtually untapped - market in local search. That's because there are a lot more "mom and pop" operations out there than firms with a national or international scope. When search engines started incorporating more and more local results in search engine results, they proved the size of the local market on the Internet.
Finally, in order for search results to have accurate local results, they need accurate information about local businesses. Good local search results just aren't possible unless what "local" actually means is made clear. This has proved to be problematic for browser-based search requests. But as an increasing number of searches are being driven by apps, this problem has disappeared simply because most apps have a larger arsenal of tools that allow them to determine exactly where the user is.
SoLoMo is steadily gaining momentum. This intersection of social media, local merchants using location-aware technology for advertising and mobile device usage offers opportunities to retailers, marketers and consumers—and all have something to gain from this new trend.
According to market research firm, Nielsen, over half of the U.S. population (50.4 percent) currently owns a smart device. In addition, well over half the population (70 percent) use social media regularly. Add to these items the fact that all mobile devices incorporate some aspect of geo-location, and all signs indicate that SoLoMo expansion is primed to take off. With the developing world often leapfrogging the West in technology initiatives, this trend should gain traction rapidly in Africa with our far higher penetration of mobile devices.
Originating in the Hyperlocal movement that came into vogue a few years ago, SoLoMo has had to wait for the right technology to evolve and for mobile usage to reach critical mass. Increasingly, venues such as suburban malls, airports, city centres and other urban shopping areas—essentially, wherever a mobile consumer goes—will be hotwired with retail incentives and deals that compel shoppers to do what they do best: consume.
It's not surprising that the mobile sector is expanding by leaps and bounds. Innovations such as 4G (ultra-broadband Internet access), retail/user-based applications, mobile payments, increased security and mobile devices that function more like powerful desktops will change - are already changing - how we live in a consumer world.
With SoLoMo, retail deals, coupons and consumer events as well as shopping and dining opportunities are broadcast to a mobile user from a specific retailer based on that user's geographic proximity, brand/retailer allegiance and shopping/check-in history. The possibilities are vast. They range from coupons for a soft drink at a nearby supermarket (or spaza!) and building supplies at your local hardware store, to a clothing sale alert at Edgars.
It's gradually becoming apparent that having a smartphone tethered to one's body is driving incremental sales and creating engagement, between opinionated shoppers themselves and retailers. A number of new user applications aim to take advantage of the opportunities.
For example, the ShopKick application grants user points, rewards and offers to drive foot traffic into select stores. Banjo, Kibits and Kismet are apps that incorporate geographic targeting to connect users; Kibits in particular to form groups, and Kismet to connect users through events and invitations.
Wallit takes social interaction one step further by providing a virtual wall for time - and location-sensitive reviews. The application, Highlight, serves all groups - users, retailers and marketers - by helping one learn more about people in the vicinity. Finally, Sonar sorts and prioritises publicly available personal data for making social connections.