Shall we? A tale of using location data to offer delayed commuters a nice cold can of Gordon’s G&T.

Mark Sawyer
Author: Mark Sawyer
VP Sales

It’s April.

The promise of spring, lambs, and a little bit of sunshine is here. And yet, we’re stood on the platform looking up at train “delayed” and train “cancelled” notifications. The temperature has been the wrong side of 0°C for seemingly weeks and the frequent snow and cold weather has caused havoc on the rail networks.

So frustrating. So demoralising. But what can you do?

Last year, Engage Hub worked on a solution for Gordon’s Gin, to help reduce the stress and inconvenience of being stuck looking up at notice boards that rarely offer good news.

Working with O2’s mobile marketing subsidiary Weve, under the instructions of Gordon’s media agency Carat, Engage Hub’s platform underpinned an innovative mobile campaign that utilised train delays as the trigger point to prompt commuters to buy premixed Gordon’s Gin & Tonic in a can.

By using hyper-targeted location-based precision marketing, commuters were pointed in the direction of the nearest stockist, and a thirst, only quenchable with an ice-cold G&T, did the rest.


How was it done?

Engage Hub’s platform allowed Carat to collate three sources of API data – from National Rail, stores supplying Gordon’s Gin & Tonic, and Weve’s location data – to send automated messages to consumers within seconds.

Weve identified those who were known travellers and in the vicinity of rail stations and, with its unique access to 100% verified deterministic telco-contract data, ensured only consumers over the age of 18 would be targeted.

Live location data was then used to identify those within the vicinity of a rail station; for example, cell tower coverage and density near Waterloo allowed the campaign to be triggered within a 200m radius, ensuring as little leakage as possible. To avoid hitting those just passing through, habitual data was overlaid to build an audience of known commuters who frequented specific railway stations for double verification.

A live National Rail API feed was then created, which Engage Hub integrated into Weve’s messaging delivery mechanic, enabling an industry first of SMS messages that were triggered to pre-qualified target consumers when trains were delayed at their station. The rich SMS drove them to a personalised store locator to find the nearest Gordon’s & Tonic stockist and pick up a can as quickly and conveniently as possible.


A recipe for success?

In a word, yes.

155,255 of these messages were delivered, leading 41,918 to find the store highlighted by the message, and 32,604 to make a purchase of a gin and tonic can.

The campaign won recognition at the 2017 Effective Mobile Marketing Awards, scooping “Most Effective Location Campaign” and “Most Effective Retail/FMCG Campaign/Solution”.

Gordon’s media agency Carat called this campaign “the most innovative use of data we’ve utilised for a fairly specific comms challenge on the Gordon’s brand digitally ever. The success of the campaign has influenced future comms strategy and executions for Gordon’s in the UK. Mobile, and particularly SMS messaging, has secured its place firmly on the Gordon’s plan in the near future!”

The story doesn’t stop there, and a beefed-up version of the initiative has been brought back by agency MullenLowe, coinciding with the desperate weather. The #YayDelay campaign gives consumers half-price or free Gordon’s Gin & Tonic at select times when trains are delayed.

Thrilled with the results, Engage Hub is pleased to know that next time there’s a rail strike, points failure or ‘the wrong kind of snow’, we are ready to play our part in helping commuters alleviate the boredom and frustration of a delayed train!

Shall we? On this evidence, yes, we shall.

To learn more about how Engage Hub can help you rebuild your customer engagement capabilities, get in touch.

Mark Sawyer
About the author: Mark Sawyer

As VP of Strategic Solution Sales for Engage Hub, Mark Sawyer has over 12 years’ experience in delivering innovative customer engagement solutions for Mobile Network Operators and large enterprises. As a result, Engage Hub's platform has been used to engage with nearly 1 billion consumers, across 30 countries around the world.