Automated Dealer Growth Using The Internet

Share Article

6FootMedia launches an innovative Viral Marketing system driven by consumer inquiries

6FootMedia (http://www.6footmedia.com) recently launched a viral marketing solution for its client WaterTech - a manufacturer in the pool & spa industry. The solution is centered on a consumers-base dealer locator while notifying new and potential dealers of the influx of consumer inquiries. Viral Marketing is the use of a self-perpetuation mechanism, such as a referral or affiliate program, to grow a user base in a manner similar to the spread of a virus.

6FootMedia has been providing marketing and branding services for its client WaterTech since its inception in 2001. As a strategic consulting firm, 6FootMedia accompanies all major marketing and advertising efforts and was engaged in November 2004 by WaterTech to launch a design & implement a consumer oriented service which would stimulate the company’s market penetration and open new distribution channels.

Leveraging Internet Inquiries

Drawing on a similar success with a healthcare client, 6FootMedia came up with a novel use for a familiar application: A dealer locator which allows consumers to search for dealers based on their distance from a given reference point such as an address or ZIP code. The technology behind this feature is termed geographic information systems (GIS) because it employs a process in which dealers (which are considered points of interest or POIs) are positioned on a map by assigning their respective longitudes and latitudes. When a user searches for a dealer, the server identifies dealers within a circle radius of the search.

Since 6FootMedia had already developed the GIS platform for geocoding addresses (6FootMedia’s Proximity Locator), WaterTech’s proximity locator development took under 2 weeks to complete! The proximity locator uses DHTML and special software which communicates with the web server to predict user input without any special plugins required by the visitor. For example – when a visitor types in their ZIP code, the system prefetches the city and state referenced by the ZIP code without reloading the webpage where the visitor is on.

It is what takes place behind the scenes of the proximity locator that is truly significant: When a consumer searches for a dealer, they are asked if they would like to have a dealer contact them. If so, their information is forwarded electronically and by fax to the dealers closest to the consumer. In addition, the system sends notices to other retailers who do not yet sell the company’s product yet are within range to the consumer and alert them that an inquiry has been made by a consumer interested in buying the certain product. These notices are sent via Email or Fax, depending on the existing relationship between the manufacturer and the retailer. Consumers are identified by their initials and town of residence and the dealer is encouraged to contact the manufacturer to establish dealership relationship in order to handle future inquiries (a “tickler alert”).

The system is loaded with information about existing dealers and all other potential retailers across the world. This data is geocoded and resides on the website server and is used to handle consumer inquiries and tickler alerts. With an average of 400-500 proximity searches daily at the high season in May-August, the system creates a self propelling marketing solution for WaterTech whereas legitimate consumer inquiries not only feed existing dealers but stimulate the growth of new distribution channels for the company at a very low cost.

Focusing on marketing growth

“The proximity location service by 6FootMedia allows us to concentrate on true market growth,” says Guy Erlich the president of Water Tech. “As we approach the coming season, we will be heavily promoting our website to drive new consumer traffic to the benefit of our existing dealers. This new traffic and the 6FootMedia’s Viral Marketing tool will no doubt open new sales channels for us and stimulate the market for our products which are innovative on their own part.”

Proximity Locator Address: http://www.watertechcorp.com/html/locator/

About 6FootMedia

6FootMedia is a strategic marketing & consulting firm based in New York City. The company implements marketing and sales solutions using the internet, printed materials and multimedia for its Fortune 500 clients which include Wachovia Bank, Coalition for the Homeless, Neuro Vision, ECP Network and others in the healthcare, financial and military industries.

Dateline: January 10, 2005

Contact Name: Tiran Dagan (tdagan@6footmedia.com)

Homepage: http://www.6footmedia.com
Contact Phone: (866) 636-6888 Ext. 201

Contact Fax: (800) 230-1587

###

Terminology

CASS: The acronym for Coding Accuracy Support System, a program through which the USPS approves sofware vendors and other information service providers to provide certified ZIP+4 and address corrections services to the public. To be eligible for automation discounts, and mailing list must have been verified and corrected using CASS certified software. (source: National Mail Order Association)

DHTML - The next generation of HTML, the language that specifies exactly how text and images will be displayed on a web page. Dynamic HTML, developed by Netscape and the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), is based entirely on industry-standard

HTML and Java. New features in Dynamic HTML, such as absolute positioning, give designers and developers greater control over the look and feel of web pages. Geocoding: also commonly known as address matching. It is the process of creating a spatial description of a place, such as a point feature from a nonspatial description of that

place, like a street address. Recorded x, y coordinates of a location are cross-referencing between a standard reference grid and non-geographic data such as addresses or zip codes to accurately map that location. In order to geocode, a geocoding service must first be

defined.

GIS: Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are information management systems tied to geographic data. Various types of data sets, such as hydrology, road networks, urban mapping, land cover, and demographic data can contain hundreds of pieces of information about a specific feature...all tied together geographically to provide spatial context.

Longitude,Latitude: Latitude is a coordinate that is used to specify positions on a sphere. The latitude of a place is the distance of the place to the equator, measured in degrees along a circle between the two poles. Places on the equator have zero latitude, the north pole has latitude +90 degrees (or 90 degrees north), and the south pole has latitude - 90 degrees (or 90 degrees south). In the sky, latitude is used in the ecliptical and galactic coordinate systems. The corresponding coordinate in the equatorial coordinate system is called declination. The second coordinate needed to specify a position on a sphere is the longitude. (source National Solar Observatory)

Plugin- A program module that adds inline functionality to a Web browser (or, in general, any other program). On the Web, plugins let Web browsers display data such as VRML scenes, real-time video, or multimedia data inline with the HTML document. Prefetching - By monitoring certain files and user activity, specially designed software can prefetch data required by the user. Prefetching data is the process whereby data that is expected to be requested is read ahead into the cache. Prefetching decreases the time needed to interact with a software application.

Viral Marketing - The use of a self-perpetuation mechanism, such as a referral or affiliate program, to grow a user base in a manner similar to the spread of a virus.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Tiran Dagan
Visit website