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Craft Brewery Uses Beacons to Draw Customers to Its Taps
Schlafly's app employs Juxtad's TapTalker technology to send push notifications to individuals who come within range of a beer tap fitted with a beacon.
For Juxtad, says Martin Howell, the company's co-founder, the hardware challenge related to beacon deployments involves finding a spot at which beacons can be affixed that does not disrupt the aesthetics of a business or other location, and where no one will tamper with them. He notes that beacons are sometimes vandalized or removed when they are highly visible. In addition, because the beacons would be installed onsite at businesses that are Schlafly's clients, the devices needed to be deployed discretely, without requiring installation and servicing by those clients.
The solution, Howell says, is a beacon developed by Juxtad and manufactured for the company by third-party manufacturers. The TapTalker beacon attaches directly to a beer tap, just below its handle. "The device itself is incognito," he states. "You don't have to know it's there."
The TapTalker beacon comes with a power setting so that the distance of its transmitted signal can be adjusted. Schlafly set its beacons for a broadcast radius of up to 30 meters, Howell reports, with the system able to discern three separate zones within that range, based on the beacon's signal strength, as received by the phone. In that way, the solution can know if an individual is standing within 10, 20 or 30 meters of the device.
Initially, Pendegraft says, his company simply wants to offer very basic information to potential customers, and to then compare the app's usage against sales changes at each location. To date, he says, about 1,000 people have downloaded the app.
"What we're hoping for are increased purchases," Pendegraft states. "This is still early stages, but what I'm excited about is the engagement we're having with our customers." The company expects to have 250 beacons installed in restaurants and bars by the end of May, he says, and is working with Juxtad on the next promotion when Earth Day ends.
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