September 2, 2010, 3:47 PM

A location-based ad company expands its reach

The Placecast Network can now potentially send text messages to 60% of U.S. consumers.

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Ad network and online marketing company 1020 Inc.’s Placecast Network, which sends location-triggered ShopAlerts text messages, has reached an agreement with Location Labs, which provides location-based services for web developers.

The deal will allow the Placecast Network to reach a potential 180 million consumers, more than 60% of all U.S. consumers, with marketing messages. However, it is unlikely its reach will extend that far because consumers must opt into the service to receive the messages. 

Placecast’s location-based campaign management platform uses location-based technology to establish a perimeter which, when entered by a consumer who has opted in to the network, sends a text message or other alert. Location Labs provides access to consumer location data that it obtains from wireless carriers. That data will allow Placecast to identify the real-time location of both smartphones and mobile phones that aren’t web-enabled. That means consumers don’t have to download an app to receive ShopAlerts from the brands and retailers they select.

“We’re excited about our partnership with Location Labs as it enables us to bring massive reach and scale to retail brands seeking to connect with customers on most phones, without an app,” says Alistair Goodman, Placecast CEO.

Placecast’s service, which was initially piloted with brands such as the North Face, allows consumers to opt in at a brand manufacturer’s or retailer’s web site to receive text messages that are delivered when they are near the chosen retailer’s location, or when the retailer or brand has a sale or other event.

Retailers can also use the service to design a program that delivers ShopAlerts in a variety of ways beyond text messages, such as mobile web sites, online and via social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

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