WO2014032039A1 - Systems for mobile devices - Google PatentsSystems for mobile devices Download PDF
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- WO2014032039A1 WO2014032039A1 PCT/US2013/056542 US2013056542W WO2014032039A1 WO 2014032039 A1 WO2014032039 A1 WO 2014032039A1 US 2013056542 W US2013056542 W US 2013056542W WO 2014032039 A1 WO2014032039 A1 WO 2014032039A1
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- mobile device
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- G06—COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
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- H04L51/00—Arrangements for user-to-user messaging in packet-switching networks, e.g. e-mail or instant messages
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- H04—ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
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- H04W4/00—Services specially adapted for wireless communication networks; Facilities therefor
- H04W4/02—Services making use of location information
- H04W4/021—Services related to particular areas, e.g. point of interest [POI] services, venue services or geofences
- H04—ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
- H04W—WIRELESS COMMUNICATION NETWORKS
- H04W4/00—Services specially adapted for wireless communication networks; Facilities therefor
- H04W4/20—Services signaling; Auxiliary data signalling, i.e. transmitting data via a non-traffic channel
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SYSTEMS FOR MOBILE DEVICES
001 The present invention relates to mobile device messaging and tracking of mobile devices.
002 This application claims the priority of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 61/740,449 filed on 20 December 2012 and U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 61/693,238 filed on 24 August 2012, the contents of which are incorporated herein by reference.
003 Merchants deliver offers and notifications to consumers through various channels, including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, and billboards. The cost and effectiveness of each channel vary, and are sometimes weighed to predict a return on investment ('ROI'}. The internet is now a huge avenue for electronic advertisements has shown to be a competitive means for reaching customers with offers related to their products or services. Electronic offers are now even provided on mobile devices such as cellular phones. Several attempts at advancing electronic advertizing or shopping have been made, all falling short of providing a truly effective system.
004 US 2008/0313037 describes an interactive advisory system for delivering individualized, user-defined information based upon prioritization of the information.
005 US 2008/0228600 describes a system in which a handheld computing device may be used to provide a user with shopping assistance services.
006 WO 2009/035468 describes a system in which a merchant supplies a requested offer for inventory to a consumer when the consumer is within a predetermined distance from the merchant.
007 US 2005/0262212 describes a method of targeted messaging including defining a targeted region, selecting a target group from a group of potential message recipients based upon the location of each potential message recipient relative to the targeted region, and transmitting a message to the selected target group.
008 US 2011/0270618 describes a system for providing targeted product offers to a consumer's mobile device base.
009 US 2012/0005016 describes a system for providing a local targeted advertising campaign with regard to at least one predefined physical site.
0010 WO 2011/014292 describes a transmission system that transmits an encrypted identifier ultrasonically in an open-air environment using an ultrasonic transmitter.
0011 Although internet-based advertising has seen several advancements, electronic offers still face issues of low ROI, low conversion rates, high cost-per-lead, and high cost- per-acquisition. What is missing in the art is a system that provides targeted messages to consumers over mobile phones that overcomes these issues. Also missing in the art is a system that allows competing merchants, e.g. merchants of a shopping mall or other collective, to use a shared avenue for mobile device targeting without overwhelming consumers with a myriad of offers. Also missing in the art is a system that provides merchants with powerful reports containing feedback from advertising campaigns in an automated or semi-automated manner. Also missing in the art is such a system that simultaneously provides consumers with an efficient electronic tool to guide them through an in-person visit to retail collective. Surprisingly, through insight of the inventors, embodiments of the invention now provide one or more of such superior properties.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
0012 The invention provides methods, systems, modules, computer-readable media, and computers for providing messages on mobile devices.
0013 Examplary embodiments are configured to a] provide messages to mobile devices that match a target profile and b] operate in a geographic environment defined by a collective of tenants ("collective"}, e.g. where messages are sent to mobile devices from a plurality of tenants of a collective. Optionally, the target profile comprises one or more targeting parameters and a target location. Optionally, uses of the system (e.g. mobile device use] is tracked and reported.
0014 One embodiment provides a system comprising at least one mobile device, at least one messaging server, and one or more modules configured for sending messages from the at least one messaging server to the at least one mobile device. The one or more modules are optionally provided on the mobile device, messaging server, and/or one or more servers networked with the mobile device and messaging server. Optionally, the one or more modules comprise a message-receiving module and a message-sending module. Optionally, the system further comprises one or more modules selected from a message- creating module, a tracking module, a matching module, a trigger module, a filter module, a registration module, a user module, a reporting module, a store directory module, a map module, and a behavior-tracking module. Optionally, the system further comprises a database comprising targeting parameters of the mobile devices or users thereof.
0015 Optionally, the system comprises one or more mobile devices, a database, and one or more messaging servers, wherein:
a. the mobile device (e.g. mobile phone] comprises one or more modules (e.g. an application] configured to:
i. provide one or more targeting parameters based on input from a user of the mobile device;
ii. optionally determine the location of the mobile phone;
iii. transmit the targeting parameters and the optional location to the database, the one or more messaging servers, or a combination thereof; and
iv. receive messages from the one or more messaging servers;
b. the database comprises a plurality of entries associated with respective mobile devices, wherein each entry comprises:
i. a unique identifier corresponding to a mobile device user;
ii. targeting parameters corresponding to the mobile device user; and iii. optionally, location data corresponding to the mobile device of the mobile device user;
c. the messaging server comprises one or more modules (e.g. an application] configured to:
i. provide a message based on input from a user of the messaging server; ii. provide a target profile comprising targeting parameters and a target location, optionally wherein the target profile comprises at least one target based on input from a user of the messaging server;
iii. determine at least one match between the target profile and the
mobile device users, wherein determining a match comprises at least one of:
a] querying the database to determine a match between the targeting parameters of the target profile and the targeting parameters of the database;
a. querying the location of the mobile device to determine a match between the target location of the target profile and the location of the mobile device, optionally wherein said query comprises comparing the target location to:
i. location data stored in the database; or ii. a location received from the mobile device; and iv. send the message to the one or more mobile devices corresponding to said match.
0016 Optionally, the system comprises a plurality of message servers or message server accounts, wherein at least one the message servers or message server accounts is a tenant server or a tenant account and at least one is a collective representative server or collective representative account. Optionally, the collective server or collective account is configured to set limitations or restrictions on the tenant server or account. For example, the collective or server account can be configuring to allow a collective representative to add sender-limiting target parameters (e.g. location and/or category of goods or service] in the target profile to send messages by the tenant.
0017 Optionally, the system comprises one or more modules selected from: a trigger module, a reporting module, a billboard module, a behavior-tracking module, a filter module, a social media module, a tenant directory module, and a collective map module.
0018 In one embodiment, the invention provides a method comprising a. providing at least one mobile device and at least one targeting parameter associated with the at least one mobile device or user thereof (e.g. a targeting parameter received a mobile device and recorded in a databse]; b. providing a message and a target profile associated with the message (e.g. by receiving a input from a second user comprising a message and a target profile comprising at least one targeting parameter];
c. presenting (e.g. displaying] the message on mobile devices having targeting parameters that match the target profile.
0019 Optionally, the method comprises:
a. receiving targeting parameters from one or more mobile device users;
b. determining the location of the one or more mobile devices of the mobile device users;
i. a message;
ii. a target profile for the message, wherein the target profile comprises: a] at least one targeting parameter associated with the
b] optionally a target location;
d. determining whether the at least one targeting parameter of the target
profile matches the targeting parameters of the at least one mobile device users;
e. determining whether the location of the target profile matches the location of the one or more mobile devices;
f. sending the message to at least one mobile device of the one or more mobile devices if:
i. the at least one targeting parameter of the target profile matches the targeting parameters of the mobile device user of the at least one mobile device; and
ii. optionally the location of the target profile matches the location of the at least one mobile device.
0020 Optionally, the location of the one or more mobile devices is in an environment comprising a collective of tenants. Optionally the tenants are retailers or vendors and the collective is selected from: a mall, a casino, an airport, and a high-traffic tourist area.
Optionally, the step of providing a message comprises receiving the message (e.g. created based on user input to the messaging server] from a tenant or a collective-representative, optionally wherein said collective representative is a mall administrator. 0021 Optionally, at least a first message is sent from a first tenant (e.g. via a first messaging server or a first user account of a message server] and at least a second message is sent from a second tenant (e.g. via a second messaging server or a second user account of a message server}. Optionally, at least a third message is sent from a collective
representative (e.g. via a third messaging server or a third user account of a messaging server}. Optionally, the first, second, and third messages are targeted to different target locations, wherein: the target location for the first message is closer in proximity to the first tenant than the second tenant, the target location for the second message is closer in proximity to the second tenant than the first tenant; and the target location for the third message encompasses a larger geographic area than that of the first location or the second location.
0022 Optionally, determining the location of the one or more mobile devices comprises periodically receiving location data from the one or more mobile devices and identifying the local time corresponding to said periodically received location data (i.e. the local time at which the mobile device is at the location}. Optionally, data is stored in a database, wherein said database data comprises: an identifier unique to the mobile device user, the targeting parameters corresponding to the mobile device user, the periodically received location data corresponding to the mobile device location, and the local time corresponding to said periodically received location data. Optionally, a report based on said database data is generated (e.g. for presentation to the user of a messaging server such as a tenant or a collective representative. Optionally, the report comprises duration of visit, duration of visit at the environment, duration of visit at the collective, duration of visit at a tenant of the collective, route taken through the collective, entry or exit points used, purchase history, response to messages, or social interaction while in the environment. Optionally, the report comprises the number of said one or more mobile devices in a designated location at a given local time (e.g. the report is generated in response to a query initiated by a collective representative or the report is sent to the collective representative (e.g.
presented on the messaging server used by the collective representative} when said number of mobile devices is greater than a threshold level. Optionally, the designated location is selected from: the geographic area defined by the collective, a geographic area within the collective, wherein said a geographic area within the collective is smaller in area than the geographic area defined by the collective, optionally wherein the geographic area within the collective is an entrance of the collective. Optionally, a collective representative can set limitations on the data which is available for reporting to the tenants (e.g. a permission to allow one or more tenants to view the report, or portion thereof).
0023 Optionally, the at least one targeting parameter of the target profile and the one or more targeting parameters based on input from a user comprise one or more user- authored parameters. Optionally, the user-authored parameters are selected from: gender of mobile device user, area code of mobile device user, and preferences of the mobile device user. Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise one or more of: category of retail goods or services (e.g. from a list of available goods categories], and retailer or tenant (e.g. from a list of available tenants or retailers in a collective].
0024 Optionally, the message (e.g. message sent by a tenant of a collective] comprises an offer for sale (e.g. advertisement, a coupon, a voucher, or gift card]. Additionally or alternatively, a message is sent (e.g. by a collective representative], wherein the message describes an upcoming event in the collective. Optionally, the user of the mobile device responds to the message by moving to the sender of the message (e.g. tenant] or to a location in proximity to the subject of the message (e.g. to the location of an upcoming event. Optionally, the user of the mobile device responds to the message by purchasing a good or service described by the message (e.g. by purchasing the good or service at a point of sale].
0025 Optionally, a report is generated comprising data from the database, e.g. using a reporting module.
0026 Optionally, the invention provides a system for performing a method taught herein (e.g. any described above]. The system comprises a messaging server and one or more mobile devices. The system is optionally configured to a] obtain targeting parameters (e.g. user-authored parameters and location data] from users of the mobile devices ('message recipients']; b] obtain a target profile and message from a user of the message server ('message sender'], match the target profile with the targeting parameters; and c] send the message to the mobile devices of users having matched targeting parameters. In one embodiment, the system is configuring in a geographic environment comprising a collective (e.g. mall] of tenants (e.g. retail stores], wherein the system comprises a plurality of message-senders: at least one representative of the collective (e.g. mall administrator] and at least one tenant representative (also referred to herein as 'tenant']. In one embodiment, the system comprises a database for storing the targeting parameters obtained from the message recipients and optionally the system is configured to generate and present reports to the message-sender.
0027 Optionally, message senders are charged a fee for use of the messaging system, e.g. charged a recurring fee based on time (e.g. monthly], charged on a per-message (e.g. a fee for every message created regardless of the number of message recipients], or a per- message-recipient (e.g. a fee for every message recipient of a message]. Optionally, such as step is provided by an invoicing module.
0028 The systems, methods, and modules of the present invention can optionally be used e.g. to increase shopper spending, tenant loyalty, and collective (e.g. shopping mall] revenue, and collective efficiency.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
0029 Figure 1 depicts an examplary system fo the invention.
0030 Figure 2 depicts an examplary system fo the invention.
0031 Figure 3 depicts an examlary user interface for a message-creating module (e.g. "POST" tab], a matching module (e.g. "TARGET" tab or "TRIGGER" tab], and a sending module (e.g. "SAVE" tab].
0032 Fif ure 4 depicts a message presented on the mobile device of a message recipient.
0033 Fif ure 5 depicts a map of a collective presented on the device of a message recipient.
0034 Fif ure 6 depicts an examplary user interface for a reporting module.
0035 Fif ure 7 depicts an examplary user interface for a message creating module
0036 Fif ure 8 depicts an examplary user interface for a matching module.
0037 Fif ure 9 depicts an examplary user interface for a trigger module.
0038 Fif ure 10 depicts an examplary user interface for a message receiving module.
0039 Fif ure 11 depicts an examplary report.
0040 Fif ure 12 depicts an examplary report. 0041 Figure 13 depicts an examplary report.
0042 Figure 14 depicts an examplary report.
0043 Figure 15 depicts an examplary report.
0044 Figure 16 depicts an examplary report.
0045 Figure 17 depicts an examplary report.
0046 Figure 18 depicts an examplary user interface for a message creating module.
0047 Figure 19 depicts an exemplary flow of information between modules.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
0048 As used here, the following definitions and abbreviations apply.
0049 "Account" means a set of rules, permissions, or functions associated with one or more users of a server or module thereof. Optionally, an account comprises a username and password or is associated with a third party social media or password authentication service (e.g. "Facebook Connect"}. Optionally, a messaging server or reporting server, or module thereof is configured for use by a plurality of users, each with an account, e.g. for using the server or module thereof remotely from a networked computer. Optionally, a plurality of account types are provided, wherein each account type has different limitations or capabilities (e.g. a tenant type account and a collective type account}.
0050 "Action" means any use of a system of the present invention or a computer thereof. Optionally, the action is any action that can be tracked by a module of the system. Optionally, an action is the use of a mobile device, e.g. message-interaction or movement of the mobile device while the location is being tracked by a system of the invention.
Optionally, the action is any use of a third party application or module that is tracked and sent to a module of the system (e.g. use of a third-party internet browser}.
0051 "Cellular device" means a mobile device comprising a cellular network adapter. In one embodiment the cellular device is a mobile phone or a cellular-enabled PDA or tablet PC (e.g. iPadTM} . 0052 "Collective" means a geographic area comprising a plurality of tenants.
Examples of collectives include a shopping mall (e.g. indoor or outdoor mall], an airport, a casino, a concert comprising a plurality of vendors, a street, a block (e.g. a city block], a city, a state, a country, or a tourist area (e.g. high traffic tourist areas such as Waikiki, Hi; Las Vegas strip, or Rodeo Drive].
0053 "Collective representative" means a representative or administrator of a plurality of tenants. Example of collective representatives include a mall administrator or a manager of a collective (e.g. mall manager or owner].
0054 "Examplary" (or "e.g." or "by example" or "such as" or "can"] means a non- limiting example.
0055 "Filter" means to block or deprioritize a message transmision to an intended mobile device. Optionally, a message is filtered from being sent by a message server, received by a mobile device, or presented on the mobile device. Optionally, a filter module filters a first message by deprioritizing the first message relative to a second message intended for the mobile device, e.g. by presenting the second message on the mobile device before presenting the first message.
0056 "Filter criterion" means a message definition that causes a message to be filtered. Optionally, a filter module compares a transmitted or intended message with one or more filter criteria and filters the message if the message matches the one or more filter criteria. Examples of filter criteria include message content, message sender (e.g. sender identity, sender location, or sender category of goods or services], message recipient (e.g. preferences, location, or behavior history such as visit history or message conversion rate], message receipt count, message recipient count, or proximity of message sender to message recipient.
0057 "History" means a collection of one or more data or calculations made therefrom. Optionally, history comprises data associated with a duration of time (e.g. day, week, month, or year]. Optionally, the history is associated with one or more mobile device users. Optionally, the history is associated with one or more geographic areas. Optionally, the history is associated with one or more message senders. Optionally, the history is associated with one or more messages. Examples of history include behavior history such as message conversion history, visit history, and travel history. 0058 "Location identifier" (or "location data"} means data that identifies a location. Optionally, the location is an absolute location (e.g. GPS coordinates] or a relative location (e.g. within a given distance of an absolute location}.
0059 "Message conversion" means a message response elicited by message.
Examples of actions of the message conversion type include any action which would typically be interpreted as a positive response to a marketing or advertising campaign, e.g. making a purchase; movement towards a message sender or location described by a message (e.g. entering a retail store}; interacting with a message by sharing the message (e.g. using a social media module}, and following an internet link provided in a message, saving the message or following any prompt provided by the message (e.g. clicking on "redeem offer"}. In one embodiment, the action is detected by a module of the system and recorded as data in a database. Optionally, a module (e.g. reporting module} determines a message conversion, e.g. by relating actions with receipt of a message, for example, based on the time of the action and message receipt (e.g. movement of a mobile device towards a message sender immediately following receipt of a message}.
0060 "Message interaction" means an action taken by a mobile device user to interact with a message. Examples of message interaction include any manual step such as clicking or following a link provided by a message, following a prompt provided by a message (e.g. redeeming an offer}, selecting an option provided by a message, answering questions provided by a message, sharing the message or message contents on a social media module, clicking a button or selecting an option presented on-screen in the form of a question or request, forwarding a message or message contents to another mobile device or networked computer, saving a message, or closing or deleting a message (e.g. clicking to close or cancel the message}. Optionally, message interaction is detected by a module (e.g. a module provided on the mobile device}. Optionally, message interaction is recorded in a database. Optionally, message interaction data is obtained from a database by a reporting module, e.g. to produce (e.g. calculate} message conversion data such as message conversion rates.
0061 Message non-conversion means a message response other than a message conversion or a non-response to a message. Optionally the message non-conversion is an active non-conversion or a non-response. Examples of active non-conversions include deleting a message, closing a message, answering questions or following prompts of a message in a negative manner (e.g. clicking "no" or "ignore"}, traveling to a location other than that specified by a message, closing message receiving module or shutting down the mobile device before taking any action with the message, or any action other than that which would provide a message conversion. Examples of non-responses include absence of an action following receipt of a message.
0062 "Message response" means an action taken by a mobile device or user thereof induced by or following receipt of a message. Examples of message responses include message conversions and message non-conversions. Responses can include, e.g. movement or message interaction. In one embodiment, the action is detected by a module of the system and recorded as data in a database. Optionally, a module (e.g. reporting module] determines a message response, e.g. by correlating actions with receipt of a message, for example, based on the time of the action and message receipt. Optionally, a module (e.g. reporting module] determines a message response, e.g. by correlating actions with receipt of a message, for example, based on the time of the action and message receipt.
0063 "Message sender" means a computer or user thereof, from which a message originates. Optionally, the message sender is the creator of the message.
0064 "Milestone" means a definition of a mobile device or user thereof, wherein the definition comprises a behavior history or calculation made therefrom. Examples of calculations include summations (e.g. total visit time over a plurality of visits], frequencies or rates (e.g. of visits, purchases, or message conversion], averages (e.g. average duration of visit or amount of purchase]. Optionally, a module is configured to provide milestones as targeting parameters or as report data. Examples of milestones include any of: Mobile device user's first time using the app; Mobile device user's first time entering a new collective, or merchant; Mobile device user's first purchase at a particular collective, or merchant; Mobile device user has populated a certain number of favorites to their
"favorites list" of merchants, or collectives; Mobile device user has populated their "friend's list" with a certain number of friends, or interacted with them (e.g. set a "meeting spot"] in some way; Mobile device user has become the most frequent visitor to a particular collective, area of the collective (e.g. food court], or particular merchant (e.g. in relation to activity-tracking or a game-based response system]; and Mobile device visits a floor they don't usually travel to, or otherwise complete other track- able actions that can be interpreted later by a system-defined or user-defined inquiry to the database. 0065 "Mobile device" means a computer comprising a wireless network adapter and a battery configured to power the computer. Optionally, the mobile device is a cellular device.
0066 "Mobile device use" means any use of a mobile device or action taken by a mobile device. Examples of mobile device uses include message responses, movement of the mobile device, browsing the internet using a mobile device, sending emails, running of or interacting with modules on the mobile device (e.g. modules of the system of the invention or third-party applications], or any trackable actions. In one embodiment, a module of the system (e.g. reporting module] tracks mobile device uses and records the use as data in a database.
0067 "Priority" means a relative rank in a message hierarchy. Optionally, a filter module prioritizes a first message by ranking the first message higher than a second message. Optionally, a filter module deprioritizes a first message by ranking the first message lower than a second message. Optionally, messages with a higher priority are transmitted before messages with a lower priority.
0068 "Report" means a collection of data. Optionally, the report is a collection of data obtained or calculated from a database and configured for presentation to a human in a digital or analog format. For example, a report is optionally presented (e.g. displayed] on a networked computer (e.g. computer of a message sender] or printed on paper. Examples of reports include documents, articles, abstracts, paragraphs, specifications, charts, graphs, still images, video clips, and audio clips.
0069 "Restaurant" means a provider of food or beverage.
0070 "Spending History" (or "Spending Data"] means a record of one or more purchases. Optionally, the purchases are actual purchases or purchase intents. Optionally spending history comprises redemption of offers by making a purchase associated with a message or message content or by providing an intent to purchase (e.g. interacting with a message by choosing an option labeled "redeem" or "yes, I want it!"]. Optionally, spending history comprises a single purchase (e.g. the date, amount, and subject of the purchase] or a plurality of purchases (e.g. total dollar amount purchased by a single mobile device user or the total number of purchases of a specified product]. 0071 "User-authored parameter" is targeting parameter that can be produced from input (e.g. text input] by the user (i.e. message recipient] of a mobile device or by selection from options on the mobile device. Examples of user-authored parameters include preferences and demographics. Optionally, user-authored parameters are produced by text input on the mobile device. Alternatively, user-authored parameters are imported from a third-part module (e.g. e.g. social media module such as Facebook].
0072 "Tenant" means a provider of goods or services. Examples of tenants include a retailer, a merchant, a vendor, a restaurant, a customer service provider (e.g. help desk], and an employee or contractor.
0073 "Tenant area" or "geo-fence defined by a tenant" means a geographic area that is associated with a tenant's location. Optionally, the area is defined by walls (e.g. exterior walls] at a tenant's locations. Optionally, the area includes locations within a proximity (e.g. 20 feet or less] of the tenant's location. Optionally, a collective comprises a plurality of tenants having different tenant areas. Typically, tenants of a collective.
0074 "Tenant computer" means a computer owned or operated by a tenant or employee thereof.
0075 "Time identifier" (or "time data"] means data that identifies the time of a given event. Optionally, the time identified by the time identifier is any of: the local time, local date, or a duration of time.
0076 "Transmit" means to send, receive, or present data (e.g. message] over a network.
0077 "Travel" means movement of a mobile device or a collection of visits to one or more locations. Optionally, travel history comprises a chronological record of visits to one or more locations such as a collective or one or more tenants thereof (e.g. frequency of visits, recency of visit, average visits per a particular time period].
0078 "Track" means to detect or determine. Optionally, actions (e.g. mobile device use] and/or data (e.g. database data] are tracked and optionally recorded in a database. Optionally, tracking comprises detection (e.g. tracking location by detecting the location], calculation (e.g. tracking message conversion history be performing correlations], or reception of data (e.g. tracking location by receiving location information from a mobile device]. Optionally, tracking comprises tracking over a period of time. 0079 "Visit" means an incidence in which the location of a mobile device matches a reference location. For example, a visit can occur upon movement of a mobile device into a specified geo-fence, e.g. geographic location defined by a collective or a tenant thereof. Optionally, a single visit is defined by movement of a mobile device into and out of a reference location (e.g. into and out of a specified geo-fence}. Optionally, the duration of visit is recorded (e.g. time spent within a a specified geo-fence}. Optionally, the location of mobile devices is determined and recorded in a database as location data, and a module (e.g. reporting module} determines an occurrence of a visit by comparing the location data with a pre-defined geographic area.
0080 According to the present invention a message is sent to a mobile device (also referred to herein as a 'message-recipient'}. The message can be any message that can be transmitted to the mobile device. Optionally, the message describes a product or service. Optionally, the message is an offer for sale of a product or service.
0081 Optionally, the message comprises one or more of: text, graphics, audio, video, a phone number, an internet link, and a location associated with a good or service.
0082 Optionally, the message is a message comprising text, graphics, a push notification, a Short Message Service (SMS} message, or a Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS} message. The push notification is optionally any message sent to a mobile device from a message server using an open internet protocol connection, e.g. Apple Push Notifications.
Offer For Sale
0083 Optionally, the message comprises an offer for sale. Examples of messages comprising an offer for sale include an advertisement, a coupon, a voucher, and gift card.
0084 Optionally, a user of a mobile device responds to the offer for sale (e.g. by entering a tenant's retail store in a mall in response to a message regarding a discounted product}. Optionally, the user of the mobile device makes a purchase (e.g. while in a tenant's retail store or using electronic payment sites such as PayPal}.
Network 0085 A system of the invention comprises a communications network ('network'} to connect the computers of the system, e.g. one or more mobile devices, at least one messaging, and optionally one or more of: a database server, reporting server, and a filtering server. The network can be any network that can transmit the data disclosed herein between the servers, the mobile devices, and any optional data-processing devices.
0086 Useful networks include wireless networks, wired networks, and a combination thereof.
0087 Optionally, the network comprises a wide area network (WAN] or a local area network (LAN}.
0088 Optionally, the network comprises a wide area network (WAN}. Optionally, the WAN comprises the internet. Optionally, the WAN comprises a wireless WAN such a cellular network. Optionally, the WAN comprises the internet and a wireless WAN (e.g. cellular network}.
0089 Optionally, the network comprises a wireless network. Optionally, the wireless network comprises a cellular network, a wireless local area network, or a wireless metropolitan area network.
0090 Optionally, the network comprises a cellular network. Useful cellular networks include Advanced Cellular telephone System (AMPS}, Narrowband Advanced Cellular telephone Service (NAMPS}, Frequency Shift Keying (FSK}, Frequency Division Multiple Access (FDMA}, Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA}, and Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA}, or any standard, such as Global System for Mobile communications (GSM} or Cellular Digital Packet Data (CDPD}, a GPRS network, an EDGE network, a 3G network, and a 4G network.
0091 The network can use any network protocol, for example, an internet protocol, TCP/IP or UDP, which are commonly used over the internet.
0092 A system of the present invention comprises a plurality of computers.
Collectively, the plurality of computers comprises one or more mobile devices, a messaging server, and the modules (e.g. computer applications} configured to perform a method of the present invention. Optionally, the plurality of computers comprises one or more of a reporting server, a filter server, and a database server. 0093 One or more servers (e.g. messaging server, reporting server, filter server, and database server] are provided, which may be provided by the same computer or different computers (e.g. the modules of the respective servers are provided on a single compouter}.
0094 Computers useful in systems of the present invention comprise:
a. one or more processors;
b. one or more storage devices comprising a computer readable medium;
c. a network access device (or 'network device'}; and
d. a structure configured for connecting the one or more processors to the other components of the computer (e.g. storage device and network access device}.
0095 The database and/or modules can be stored on the computer readable medium accessible to a computer.
0096 Useful computer-readable media includes any physical media configured to store code and be readable by a computer. For example, useful computer-readable media computer includes volatile media, nonvolatile media, removable media, non-removable media, RAM, ROM, EEPROM, flash memory or other memory technology, CD-ROM, digital versatile disks (DVD}, holographic media or other optical disk storage, magnetic cassettes, magnetic tape, magnetic disk storage, or other magnetic storage devices.
0097 Useful processors include any processor configured to access the one or more storage devices and the network access device. Examples of such processors are well known in the art and are commonly connected to the storage devices and network access devices by a system bus (e.g. on a motherboard}.
0098 Useful network access devices include any devices configured to transmit data between the computer and the network. Examples include network adapters wired adapters such as ethernet adapters and wireless adapters such as Wi-Fi adapters (e.g. 802.11 adapter} and cellular adapters (e.g. GSM, TDMA, CDMA, 3G, and 4G adapters}.
0099 Useful structures configured for connecting the one or more processors to other components include, e.g. a motherboard comprising a northbridge and southbridge. Other structures that can be present are are well known in the art, e.g. as seen in desktop computers and commercial servers. 00100 Other examples of useful computer architecture are described, for example, by US 2005/0262212, US 2008/0228600, US2008/0313037, US 2011/0270618, US
2012/0005016, US 2012/0096490, and WO/2009/035468 WO/2011/082041.
00101 A system of the invention comprises one or more mobile devices.
00102 According to the present invention, the mobile device is any computer having the following technical features:
a. a user module configured to provide a graphic user interface (GUI], e.g. for interfacing with a messaging module;
b. a user input device;
c. a display; and
d. a wireless network adapter.
00103 Examples of mobile devices include a mobile telephones phone, a handheld computer, a personal digital assistant (PDA], a tablet PC, a cellular phone, a smart phone, and a portable an email device.
00104 Optionally, the mobile device is a cellular device. Optionally, the mobile device is a cellular device, wherein the cellular device is a cellular telephone or a cellular-enabled PDA or tablet PC (e.g. iPadTM).
00105 The user input device can be any device or combination of devices configured for operation by a user to operate the remote device and/or the user module. Optionally, the input device comprises a touch screen, a keypad, one or more buttons, one or more scroll wheels, or one or more buttons or other device that can be operated by a user. Optionally, the input device comprises a microphone or a camera.
00106 The display can be any output device that produces a graphic viewable by the user. Optionally, the display is selected from: an LCD, an LED, and a monitor.
00107 Optionally, at least one mobile device is configured for a message recipient (e.g. mall shopper], e.g. configured for receiving messages and optionally providing targeting parameters for the mobile device user. Optionally, an additional one or more mobile devices are configured for a message-sender (e.g. a tenant or a collective representative], e.g. configured for sending messages to mobile devices of message-recipients. The mobile devices can be configured, for the respective user (e.g. message recipient or message sender], for example, by providing one or more modules that are configured for carrying out the respective steps of a method of the present invention (e.g. a mobile device may be a message server], or by providing a web-enabled module that interacts with a module of a remote server (e.g. the messaging server is provided as a web-based application accessible to a mobile device of a message-sender and/or the message-receiving and tracking modules are configured as a web-based application accessible to a mobile device of a message-recipient].
00108 Optionally, the mobile device is a mobile device of message recipient and the mobile device comprises location device. The location device (e.g. GPS device] can be any hardware useful for determining the location of the phone. Examples of useful
technologies that can be implemented to provide a location include GPS WiFi, Wifi beacon identification (e.g. without data connectivity], Cell Phone Signals, triangulation, short range RF signals including RFID, BlueTooth, PANs, and Magnetic Field detection.
00109 Other examples of useful mobile device architectures are described, for example, by US 2005/0262212, US 2008/0228600, US2008/0313037, US 2011/0270618, US 2012/0005016, US 2012/0096490, and WO/2009/035468 WO/2011/082041.
00110 A system of the invention comprises a database server comprising the database on a computer readable medium. The server can be configured in any manner that provides access to the database, e.g. by the matching module and/or the tracking module.
00111 The database and server can be configured in any manner that provides identification data that identifies mobile device users (message recipients] and the respective targeting parameters associated with each mobile device user.
00112 Optionally, the data comprises a plurality of entries, a database of entries, wherein each entry comprises an identifier set wherein:
a. the identifier set comprises:
i. a user identifier unique to the mobile device or user; and ii. one or more targeting parameters associated with the mobile device user.
00113 A database useful in the present invention need not be a single file and the database server need not be a single computer. For example, the database can be a collection of sub-databases (e.g. files] provided on different computers that comprise a data link between each other (e.g. all the database computers are connected to the network}.
00114 Optionally, the server is a single computer comprising the entire database on a single storage device. In another embodiment, the server is a single computer comprising the database as a plurality of database portions distributed across a plurality of storage devices. In another embodiment, the server is a plurality of computers, each comprising a database portion.
00115 Optionally, a useful database entry is any collection or associations of
identification data in a database, wherein the identification data comprises a user identifier, targeting parameters, and optional location data corresponding to the location of the mobile devices of message-recipients. The identification data can be provided in any manner that associates the user identifier and respective targeting parameters. The user identifier and the targeting parameters can be associated with each other in any manner. For example, the user identifier and the targeting parameters can be provided together in a line of code that is independent from that of other entries. Alternatively, the user identifier and the targeting parameters can be provided in the database in any manner that associates one with the other.
00116 Optionally, a matching module compares a query comprising a target profile to database on the database server. In another embodiment, the database is downloaded from the database to a second computer (e.g. messaging server remote from the database server] and a matching module compares the query to the database on the second computer.
00117 Other examples of useful database architectures and configurations are described, for example, by US 2005/0262212, US 2008/0228600, US2008/0313037, US 2011/0270618, US 2012/0005016, US 2012/0096490, and WO/2009/035468
WO/2011/082041. Messaging Server
00118 A system of the invention comprises a messaging server comprising one or more modules configured to create and send a message, e.g. a message-creating module and a message-sending module. The messaging server can also comprise one or more modules configured to create a target profile and/or match the target profile with targeting parameters of the database, e.g. a matching module.
00119 Optionally, the server is networked with the database server (e.g. as depicted in Figure 1} or is the same computer as the database server (e.g. as depicted in Figure 2).
00120 Optionally, the messaging server comprises a GUI for interacting with a messaging sender, e.g. (e.g. as depicted in Figure 1}. Alternatively, the messaging server is remote from the computer of the message-sender (e.g. as depicted in Figure 2).
00121 Optionally, the messaging server is a mobile device or any other networked computer. Optionally, the system comprises a plurality of messaging servers, e.g. for use by a plurality of tenants of a collective. Alternatively, the system optionally comprises one messaging server and a plurality of messaging server accounts configured for using the messaging server. In this alternative example, each of a plurality of message senders (e.g. tenants of a collective] can be provided with individual accounts for using the messaging server. Accordingly, a message can be received from a message sender in any manner.
00122 Other examples of useful messaging server architectures and configurations are described, for example, by US 2005/0262212, US 2008/0228600, US2008/0313037, US 2011/0270618, US 2012/0005016, US 2012/0096490, and WO/2009/035468
00123 A system of the invention optionally comprises a reporting server comprising one or more modules configured to create a report from data stored in a database.
00124 Optionally, the server is networked with the database server or is the same computer as the database server.
00125 Optionally, the reporting server comprises a GUI for interacting with a user (e.g. a message sender}. Alternatively, the reporting server is remote from the computer of the user. 00126 Optionally, the server is a mobile device or any other networked computer.
Optionally, the system comprises a plurality of reporting servers, e.g. for use by a plurality of tenants of a collective. Alternatively, the system optionally comprises one reporting server and a plurality of reporting server accounts configured for using the reporting server. In this alternative example, each of a plurality of message senders (e.g. tenants of a collective] can be provided with individual accounts for using the messaging server.
Accordingly, a report can be presented to a user in any manner.
00127 Optionally, the reporting server is the same computer as the messaging server. Optionally, the reporting module is a subroutine of the messaging module, e.g. such that message senders can also generate reports.
00128 In one embodiment of the present invention, identification data are provided that correspond to users of mobile devices (message recipients] and the respective targeting parameters corresponding to the respective mobile device user. The identification data or targeting parameters thereof optionally comprises a location of a respective mobile device ('location data'].
00129 Optionally, the identification data is stored in on a database, for example, transmitted to the database from a tracking module or a mobile device of a message- recipient and then accessed by a messaging server, a matching module, or a reporting module. Additionally or alternatively, the identification data is transmitted from a message-recipient to a messaging server.
00130 Other examples of useful identification data are described, for example, by US 2005/0262212, US 2008/0228600, US2008/0313037, US 2011/0270618, US
2012/0005016, US 2012/0096490, and WO/2009/035468 WO/2011/082041.
00131 Optionally, the identification data comprises a user identifier. The user identifier is any identifier that is unique to a user of a mobile device (e.g. mall shopper]. Optionally, the user identifier is an alphanumeric identifier or a serial number.
Targeting Parameters 00132 Targeting parameters are any identification data associated with a mobile device or user thereof. Typically, the entire set of targeting parameters is not shared by all mobile device users (i.e. potential message recipients}.
00133 Optionally, the targeting parameters include one or more user-authored parameters. Optionally, the targeting parameters include one or more user authored parameters selected from demographic parameters and preference parameters.
00134 Targeting parameters can be obtained from a mobile device user in any manner. For example, a mobile device user can input targeting parameters using the mobile device on which the user will receive messages or, alternatively, any other networked computer (e.g. a computer that can access a mobile device user's account}.
00135 Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise one or more preference parameters. Optionally, the one or more preference parameters are selected from: favorite message sender(s} (e.g. favorite tenant of a collective}, category of goods or services, and message receipt limitation. Optionally, the message receipt limitation is a limit of the number of messages, e.g. number of messages per day or visit, or number of messages from a message sender, optionally wherein the message sender is a collective representative or a tenant. Optionally, the message receipt limitation is a restriction on receiving messages from a specific message sender (e.g. a collective representative or tenant}, for example, a block on receiving messages from a specific message sender. Optionally, the message receipt limitation is a restriction (e.g. a block} on receiving message when the location of the mobile device is outside a specified location, e.g. wherein the specific location is any of: at or in proximity to the collective, at or in proximity to the message sender, or at or in proximity to a tenant of the same category as the message sender. Preference parameters can be used, e.g. to allow a mobile device user to tailor which message senders or categories from which to receive messages, e.g. by causing a matching module to determine a match/non-match of the mobile device to the target profile of a message or by filtering /not filtering reception of a message by the mobile device if a filter is provided based on the preferences.
00136 Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise one or more demographics parameters selected from: gender, age, race or ethnicity, language spoken, income (e.g. personal or household income}, residence location (e.g. zip code, city, state, country, province, or region] family status (e.g. has children, has grandchildren, has kids, or has pets] relationship status operating system of mobile phone education level, and profession.
00137 Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise a behavior history. The behavior history can be any behaviors or actions of the mobile device or mobile device user.
Behavior history can be tracked and/or recorded by an optional behavior-tracking module. Optionally, the behavior history comprises one or more parameters selected from:
a. message conversion history;
b. spending history;
c. visit history to collective, tenant, or message sender;
d. milestone history; and
e. travel history.
00138 Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise a message conversion history. Optionally, a message conversion history comprises any action of the one or more mobile device users following reception of a previous message, e.g. an action induced prompted by, or otherwise taken in response to receipt of a previous message. Optionally, the action comprises any of:
a. mobile device user viewed a previous message (e.g. when message viewing is manual};
b. mobile device user traveled to or nearby the message subject or message sender (e.g. user walks into a retail store after receiving a message about a sale item in the retail store};
c. mobile device user shared the message with a friend (e.g. using a social
media module or a message-sending module};
d. mobile device user redeemed an offer provided by a message;
e. mobile device user requested more info, e.g. by pulling up a discount code/instructions optionally linked to in a message; and
f. mobile device user made a purchase.
00139 Message conversion history is a useful parameter, e.g. for targeting mobile device users that have a particular conversion history. For example, a message sender might wish to target mobile device users that have a high message conversion rate because they are likely to respond to given message. As another example, a message sender can target a mobile device user with a poor message conversion rate with a message containing a deep discount in an effort to increase message conversion.
00140 Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise a spending history, e.g. a spending history at a collective, tenant, or message sender. Optionally, the spending history comprises data associated with actual purchases or purchase intents. Optionally, the spending history comprises any of: a chronological history of each purchases, a spending amount average, an amount spent via a mobile device user's member or rewards cards, or a sale-associated spending history (e.g. spending history during discounts or special offers) . Optionally, the spending history is a spending amount average selected from: spending amount per purchase; spending amount per good (e.g. average good price); spending amount per tenant (e.g. average spending amount at a given tenant or average spending amount at all tenants in a collective); spending amount per merchant, spending amount per visit to the collective, tenant, or message sender; and spending amount per time window, optionally wherein the time window is any of a day, a week, a month, or a year, a quarter, or a predetermined or user-specified custom window of time. Spending history can be tracked as actual purchases or as purchase intent. For example, spending history can be tracked by providing a system of the invention with any of: a payment module (e.g. Apple's Passbook, Google's Wallet, PayPal, Authorize.net, LevelUp, Stripe, mobile device-based credit cards, wireless service (e.g. cellular provider) billing, or any type of mobile wallet); access or interface to third-party payment, credit card, debit card, or loyalty card or rewards card (e.g. department store Macy's card) modules or databases; messages containing codes (e.g. numerical or graphical codes such as scanable barcodes such as QR codes) that can be identified (e.g. scanned or recorded) at a point of sale; messages containing a prompt or selectable option (e.g. "redeem offer") that indicates a mobile device user's intent to purchase , any payment modules that operate through proximity based detection such as contactless electronic data exchange transactions (e.g., using near field communications "NFC"). Spending history is a useful parameter, e.g. in order to target mobile device users having specific spending history (e.g. users classified as big spenders or low spenders).
00141 Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise visit history, e.g. visit history to a collective, tenant, or message sender. Optionally, the visit history comprises any of: visit frequency, time elapsed since last visit, time elapsed since first visit, slope of visit frequency vs time curve, and visit duration. Optionally, the visit duration is duration average at the collective and duration distribution at the collective. Examples of duration average at the collective include average duration per visit or per time window (e.g. a day, a week, a month, or a year}. Examples of duration distribution at the collective include: majority of total duration is during the weekend or non-weekend; majority of total duration is during the morning, afternoon, weekend, or current sub portion of the day; maximum average duration per visit is during the weekend or non-weekend; and maximum average duration per visit is during the morning, afternoon, weekend, or current sub portion of the day. Visit history can be recorded, e.g. by determining the location of a mobile device and comparing the location to predetermined areas or geo-fences defined by a collective (e.g. shopping mall perimeter], tenant (e.g. retail store perimeter], or message sender (e.g. area in proximity to a customer service desk when the message sender is customer service]. Optionally, the visit history comprises a visit frequency or a date of last visit.
00142 Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise a milestone history. The milestones can be any milestones based on achievement, trends, history, and/or activity of a mobile device or mobile device uses, or calculations produced therefrom. Optionally milestones are selected from:
a. high chance of spending per visit ('Big Spender']
b. high amount per purchase ("Deep Pockets"]
c. high amount of coupon / offer redemption("The Redeemer"]
d. frequently travels to highernumbered floors ("High Stepper"]
e. frequently travels the whole length of the collective ("The Explorer"] f. spends a lot of time at the collective, per visit ("The Wanderer"
g. spends a lot of time at the collective overall ("Shopaholic"]
h. totally new to this collective, or the tenant ("Newbie"]
i. frequently meets with friends ("Social Butterfly"]
j. friends list builds up past a certain point ("Mr./Ms. Popular"]
k. frequently attends events ("Johnny OnTheSpot"]
1. frequently checks deals when they first arrive, or during visit ("Broadcaster"] m. frequently shares deals, events, etc. with other mobile device users ("Chatty Kathy"}
n. frequently invites new mobile device users to start using the system ("Promoter"}
00143 Optionally, the targeting parameters comprise a travel history, e.g. a travel pattern history. Optionally, the travel history comprises a travel pattern of a] the user visiting the message sender the same day the user visits a specified location and b] the determined location of the one or more mobile devices of the mobile device users is the specified location., e.g. a specified location selected from; in or at a tenant other than the message sender; a specific entry point, wherein the collective comprises a plurality of entry points; and a portion of a parking lot, wherein the collective comprises a plurality of parking lot portions.
00144 Optionally, the targeting parameters include one or more transient parameters. A transient parameter is a targeting parameter that is dependent upon changing variables of the message recipient's mobile device. For example, transient parameters can include any of: day (e.g. day of the week], date, time (e.g. local time or duration at location], and location (e.g. proximity to message-sender or absolute location such as GPS location}. Transient parameters such as time, date, day, or number of times a mobile device has visited a geographic area (e.g. collective or tenant] can be determined by the mobile device of the message-recipient upon sending location data to a database or message-sender or can be determined by any other computer (e.g. database or computer of a message sender receiving location tracking data from the mobile device of a message recipient}.
00145 Location data comprises a location identifier specific to a geographic location.
00146 The geographic location can be of any size and shape, e.g. a single point such as a GPS coordinate or a defined geographic area. For example, the location can be any of: a] the geographic area defined by a retail environment or a collective (e.g. mall perimeter}; b] a geographic area within or in proximity to a tenant or retail store (e.g. area defined by an arc with a radius (e.g. less than about 50 feet] extending from a point defined by an entrance to the tenant or retail store}; or c] a single point within any of a]-c}. 00147 Optionally, the location data further comprises altitude data (e.g. floor level}. For example, the location data can comprise a GPS location and a floor level. Altitude data can be obtained in any manner, e.g. by the use of a barometer provided on the mobile device or by proximity of the mobile device (e.g. calculated by signal strength] to a transmitter (e.g. wireless transmitter such as Bluetooth or Wi-Fi transmitter] placed at a known altitude (e.g. near a staircase or elevator on a given floor of a collective].
00148 Optionally, the location data further comprises a local time associated with the location identifier. The local time is optionally be used in combination with the location of the mobile device of a message-recipient to track the movement and transient location of the mobile device.
00149 According to the present invention, a target profile is provided comprising one or more targeting parameters. Optionally, the target profile comprises at least one user- authored parameter (e.g. goods category or tenant] and at least one transient parameter (e.g. location and/or time or date].
00150 A target profile can be compared and matched with the identification data (e.g. targeting parameters] associated with message-recipients and/or the mobile devices thereof. The target profile can be associated with a message or a report for targeting the message or the report for the message-recipients matched with the target profile.
00151 Optionally, a tenant provides a first target profile comprising a first location identifier and a collective representative provides a second target profile. Optionally, the second target profile does not comprise a location identifier. Alternatively, the second target profile comprises a second location identifier, wherein the geographic location designated by second location identifier is greater in area than the geographic location designated by the first location identifier. Such a technical feature provides, for example, a collective representative a greater area to target messages or reports than the tenant. For example, the second location identifier can designate the geographic area defined by the entire collective and/or the first location identifier designates a geographic area within the collective such as an area in close proximity to the tenant.
00152 Optionally, the target profile targets a future event, for example, wherein the target profile comprises a day, time, or date or range thereof that that is later than the local time at which the target profile is created. For, example, a tenant may wish to create a target profile which targets mobile device users that will be a specific location at a future time or date.
00153 Optionally, the target profile targets a current event, for example, wherein the target profile does not comprise a day, time, or date or range thereof wherein the target profile comprises the current day (or day range encompassing the current day] or date (or date range encompassing the current date] or the current local time (or a time range which encompasses the local time}. For, example, a tenant may wish to create a target profile which targets mobile device users that are at a specific location.
00154 Optionally, the target profile comprises at least one sender-limiting targeting parameter. The sender-limiting targeting parameter can be any targeting parameter is not based on the user input of the message sender or a required targeting parameter (i.e. a parameter that cannot be removed from the target profile by user input from the message sender}. Optionally, the message sender is a tenant of a collective and said targeting parameter is based on input from an administrator of a collective (e.g. collective administrator account can be used to set targeting parameters such as location (e.g. geo- fence boundary or proximity to tenant} or a preference targeting parameter (e.g. category of goods or services, or favorite tenant}. Optionally, the sender-limiting targeting parameter is a message receipt limiting (i.e. the matching module requires that a given message is in accordance with a user's message receipt limitation}. Any of these embodiments are useful alone or in combination with messaging algorithms (e.g.
trafficking or anti-spam algorithms} of the present invention, e.g. to reduce spam, avoid overwhelming mobile device users with too many messages, and to increase the relevance and effectiveness of messages (e.g. discount offers}.
00155 Optionally, the target location is a geographic location associated with the collective, e.g. defined by the perimeter of the collective and optionally comprising a parking lot associated with the collective.
00156 According to the present invention, a module is provided on a computer-readable medium. Modules are compilations of instructions ('code'} executable by one or more computers to perform a function. The modules can be provided on any computer readable media (e.g. storage devices] assessable by the one or more computers. Any type of module is useful in the present invention. Collectively, the modules are configured for providing any method of the present invention. Although detailed module logic/procedures are provided for certain steps in the present methods, the skilled artisan, with the teachings provided herein, can readily configure the modules to provide any methods or steps taught herein in a number of manners.
00157 Optionally, a system of the present invention comprises a tracking module, a message-receiving module, a message-creating module, a message-sending module, and a matching module. The modules can be stored on the same or different computer readable media. The modules can be included together in a single application (e.g. located on a remote server, wherein the application can access the database and is accessible to mobile devices of message-recipient and computers such a mobile devices of message-senders] or can be included in distinct applications configured to interact with each other to provide the methods taught herein.
00158 The modules can be configured, for example, as a program, an application, an applet, a macro, a script, a subroutine unit of code, a software function unit of code, an object (as in an object-oriented paradigm], firmware, or any other type of computer code. The code can include any code, e.g. source code, object code, machine code, or any other stored data that is operable to cause a processing system to perform methods described herein.
00159 The code and functionality of a given module can be located on a single computer or distributed across multiple computers.
00160 Optionally, the modules are collectively configured for a] receiving targeting parameters from a message-recipient, b] determining the location of the mobile device of the message-recipient, c] storing the targeting parameters and optionally the location on a database, d] receiving a message from a message-sender; e] receiving a target profile from a message-sender, f] determining a match between the target profile and the targeting parameters of the message-recipient, and g] sending the message to the mobile device of a message-recipient associated with the match. Optionally, the modules are further collectively configured for generating a report of the database and optionally displaying the report to a message-sender. 00161 Optionally, the modules are collectively configured for determining the local time (e.g. by providing or accessing a local time clock}. The local time can be used by the system in combination with the location of the mobile device to track the movement and transient location of the mobile device.
00162 Optionally, the modules are collectively configured for determining the geographic location of the mobile device (e.g. the database or messaging module receiving location data comprising a location identifier from a tracking module of the mobile device}. The geographic location can be used by the system, for example, in order to determine whether the user is in the target location (e.g. in proximity to a collective, or at the entrance of a tenant or of a collective}.
00163 With the teachings provided herein, the skilled artisan can readily produce systems of the present invention with any modules that perform the methods taught herein. Examples of modules and module configurations useful in the present are independently known in the art. For example, various useful architectures and
configurations for messaging modules (e.g. creating, sending, receiving}, matching modules, message-sending, targeting parameters, and databases are described by US 2005/0262212, US 2008/0228600, US2008/0313037, US 2011/0270618, US
2012/0005016, US 2012/0096490, and WO/2009/035468 WO/2011/082041.
00164 A system of the present invention can comprise a message-receiving module configured for receiving messages over the network adapter of a mobile device and presenting the messages to the user of the mobile device ('message recipient'}.
00165 Optionally, the message-receiving module is provided on the mobile device of a message recipient. In another embodiment, the message-receiving module is provided on a remote server and the mobile device comprises a user module (e.g. web browser or web- enabled application} configured to interface the user and communicating with the message-receiving module.
00166 A system of the present invention can comprise a tracking module configured for a} allowing a mobile device user (message-recipient} to input or select targeting parameters; b] determine the location of the mobile device; and c] transmit the targeting parameters and location to a database or the computer of a message-sender.
00167 Optionally, the tracking module is provided on the mobile device of a message recipient. In another embodiment, the message-receiving module is provided on a remote server and the mobile device comprises a user module (e.g. web browser or web-enabled application] configured to interface the user. Optionally, the tracking module is a composed of interacting-modules located on different computers on the network.
00168 Optionally, a message-creating module can comprise a user module or can be configured to interact with a user module.
00169 Optionally, the tracking module is composed of a 1} location tracking module configured for determining the location of the mobile device and 2] a targeting parameter tracking module configured for providing one or more targeting parameters in response to a user action (e.g. user input or selection from on-screen options}. The location tracking module optionally repeatedly (e.g. continuously] determines the location of the mobile device, e.g. to provide the real-time location of the mobile device of a message-recipient and/or provide movement data of the mobile device. The targeting module is optionally configured to allow the user to modify targeting parameters at will, e.g. to provide updated user-authored targeting parameters.
00170 A system of the present invention can comprise a message-creating module configured for creating a message, optionally wherein said message is created from a first user input.
00171 Optionally, the message-creating module is provided on a mobile device of a message-sender. In another embodiment, the message-creating module is provided on a remote server and the mobile device or other computer of the message sender comprises a user module (e.g. web browser or web-enabled application] configured to interface the user.
00172 Optionally, a message-creating module can comprise a user module or can be configured to interact with a user module.
00173 The message-creating module is optionally provided on any networked computer, e.g. a desktop computer or mobile device. Accordingly, the system can receive a message from any user, e.g. tenant or collective representative, using any networked computer.
00174 Optionally, the
00175 A system of the present invention can comprise a message-sending module for sending a message to a message recipient. Optionally, the message-sending module is configured to send a message to a message-recipient identified by a matching module (i.e. matching a target profile}.
00176 Optionally, a messaging sending module can comprise a user module or can be configured to interact with a user module.
00177 Optionally, a matching module is provided for matching a target profile with targeting parameters corresponding to a message-recipient or mobile device thereof. Optionally, the matching module comprises code configured for:
a. receiving a user input;
b. creating a query based on the user input, wherein the query comprises a target profile of targeting parameters;
c. matching the target profile by:
i. comparing the target profile with the targeting parameters
corresponding to one or more message-recipients;
ii. identifying at least one match between the target profile and the targeting parameters corresponding to one or more message- recipients; and
iii. identifying the message-recipient associated with at least one match, thereby providing at least one matched mobile device user.
00178 Optionally, the user input comprises any of: a selection from a list of user inputs (e.g. list of available targeting parameters] and a text input (e.g. keyword described a targeting parameter}. 00179 Optionally, upon receiving a user input, the query module creates a query in a form that can be compared to the targeting parameters in the database to identify a match.
00180 Optionally, the matching module is provided on a messaging server. Optionally, the messaging server is a mobile device (e.g. of a tenant or collective representative] or a web-based server accessible to a mobile device (e.g. of a tenant or collective
00181 Optionally, the matching module is configured for use by different users, for example, the matching module can be configured with a plurality of user accounts or account types (e.g. a tenant account and a collective representative (e.g. admin] account]. Optionally, the plurality of user accounts or account types provide the user with choices of targeting parameters to create the query (e.g. a tenant account has more limited choices than a collective representative account]. Optionally, the plurality of user accounts or account types are configured to create queries with different limitations on the geographic area size that is allowed for targeting (e.g. a tenant account is limited to smaller geographic area size than a collective representative account]. Optionally, the matching module requires user authentication (e.g. after registering for the messaging server using a registration module]. Optionally, the collective representative account is configured to allow the collective representative to set or require one or more sender-limiting targeting parameters (e.g. location and/or location] in the target profile used by the tenant accounts for message-sending.
00182 Optionally, a matching module can comprise a user module or can be configured to interact with a user module.
00183 Accordingly, the matching module can be used to target specific message- recipients (e.g. mall shoppers] increase shopper spending, tenant loyalty, and collective (e.g. shopping mall] revenue, and collective efficiency.
00184 Optionally, the matching module comprises a trigger module configured to initiate or 'trigger' the steps of matching the target profile. The trigger can be any single event or collection of events ('triggering event'].
00185 Useful triggers include a location-based trigger (e.g. movement or proximity based trigger], a scheduled trigger, and behavior trigger. 00186 Optionally, the trigger comprises a movement or location-based trigger. For example, a trigger can include any of: a mobile device user travels to a location such a location defined in the target profile or travels into proximity of the message sender (e.g. a geo-fence associated with a message sender such as a tenant's store], mobile device travels to a particular, pre-defined region of a tenant or collective, or a particular geo-fence, mobile device travels a particular distance while inside a collective, mobile device user enters or exits a tenant or collective at a particular point, mobile device user travels within a certain proximity of a friend or other mobile device user.
00187 Optionally, the trigger comprises a scheduled trigger (e.g. preset time or intervals for sending a message]. For example, the scheduled trigger can be a specific or random time in the future, or a plurality of times in the future, e.g. specific date/time, repeating or periodic times (e.g. daily/weekly/monthly], or a given number of randomly generated times per day. Such a configuration is useful, for example, for providing an on-going trigger that sends a message any time a mobile device user matches the target profile. Optionally, the trigger is synchronized or fed information from an external service or data feed (e.g. linking with a merchant's corporate office for the master marketing schedule].
00188 Optionally, the trigger comprises a behavioral trigger (e.g. mobile device user "checks in" to a mall, e.g. using a social media application].
00189 Optionally, the trigger comprises a movement or proximity trigger. For example, the trigger can comprise receipt of location data from the mobile device of a mobile device, e.g. location data wherein the location data matches a target location of the target profile (e.g. when a mobile device user crosses a geo-fence]. As another example, the trigger can comprise receipt of travel data from a mobile device of a mobile device user, e.g. when the location of a mobile device changes. As another example, the trigger can comprise a determination that a mobile device user has switched floors or traveled to a new area of the collective. As another example, the trigger comprises a mobile device user traveling within a particular distance of the message sender, the sender's floor, the sender's area/"wing", or any other area either within the merchant itself or within the collective (e.g. public/common areas, food court, concert stages/venues]. As another example, the trigger comprises an external location outside of the message sender and the collective itself (e.g. a competitors' collective or a common/public area like a public square]. 00190 Optionally, the trigger comprises a behavior ("behavior trigger"}. The behavior can optionally be any action taken by a mobile device or mobile device user (i.e. potential message recipient}. Optionally, the behavior is selected from:
a. mobile device user shares something across social media;
b. mobile device user indicates a particular response to a message, offer or survey question they receive;
c. mobile device user redeems and offer, makes a purchase, or indicates they intend to make a purchase;
d. mobile device user switches floors or travels to a new/separate region of the building/ collective;
e. mobile device user RSVP's to, or checks into, an event;
f. mobile device user adds a new friend to their "friends list";
g. mobile device user visits a collective or merchant for the first time; h. mobile device user updates their targeting parameters or preferences;
i. participation of a mobile device user in a program associated with the
message sender (e.g. subscription of a mobile device user to a message sender's associated email-list, social media account(s}, VIP program, loyalty program, or other type of segmented customer/contact list}; j. interaction of a mobile device user on a social media module (e.g. a module configured for sending messages or content to another mobile device or a third party social media module such as Facebook, Foursquare, Twitter, or Pinterest} with any of: the message sender, a collective of the message sender (e.g. mall wherein the message sender is a tenant}, a previous message received from the message sender, or a recipient of a message from the sender. For example, a mobile device user can interact with the message sender or a collective of the message sender "checking in" or "following" or "liking" them on a social media module. As another example, a user can interact with a previous message from the message sender by "sharing" the message or a discounted offer detailed by the message on a social media app; k. responds to a previous message, e.g. redeems an offer, RSVP's to an event, or attends an event;
1. parks car (e.g. sets a parking pin using the mobile device, e.g. by using a using a parking spot locator module};
m. sets a meeting spot with a friend (e.g. with a friend invitation such as using a social media module};
00191 Optionally, the trigger comprises a plurality of triggering events. In this embodiment, the trigger can be configured to require each of the plurality of triggering events or any of the plurality of triggering events to initiate the step of matching a target profile. Optionally, the plurality of triggering events comprises a proximity or movement trigger and a behavioral trigger.
00192 Optionally, the trigger comprises a behavioral trigger related to an aggregate of multiple mobile device users ("group trigger"} performing or achieving a particular action collectively (e.g. trigger occurs when a certain number of mobile device users are in a collective at a particular time, trigger occurs when a certain number of mobile device users have RSVP-ed or checked into an event, trigger occurs when a certain number of mobile device users are within the same proximity of each other, trigger occurs when a certain number of mobile device users are invited to or meet at a particular "Meeting Spot", trigger occurs when a certain number of mobile device users interact with or redeem an offer, or other types of triggers that occur in response to the actions of multiple mobile device users}.
00193 Optionally, the trigger comprises a manual trigger. The manual trigger is optionally any action by the message sender that can alone initiate the matching module (i.e. does not require an additional event or action to initiate the matching module}. For example, the message sender can click "send."
00195 Optionally, a system of the present invention comprises a filter module configured to filter messages. Filtering a message con comprise preventing (e.g. inhibiting , delaying, or queuing} any stage of a message sending process such a step of creating, sending , or delivering a message. 00196 Optionally, the filter module comprises an algorithm configured to determine if the message, message sender, or message recipient matches filter criteria. Optionally, the criteria comprise any of: maximum message count (e.g. message sent count or message receipt count], maximum recipient count, behavior history, location (e.g. proximity to a location such as a message sender or other location associated with a message], a targeting parameter (e.g. demographics or preferences], .
00197 Optionally, the filter module comprises a filter criterion, wherein the filter criterion is a behavior, a location, or a movement (e.g. any behaviors, locations, or movements described herein as triggers].
00198 Optionally, the filter module comprises at least one maximum message count as a filter criterion. The message count can be of any type, e.g. a total count (e.g. total number of messages sent by a message sender or received by a mobile device] or a count frequency (e.g. frequency of messages sent by a message sender or received by a mobile device]. Optionally the message count is any of: the number or frequency of messages sent by a message sender, the number or frequency of messages received by a mobile device
("message receipt count"], or the number or frequency of messages sent to a mobile device from a given message sender. Examples of count frequency include message count per day, hour, minute, or visit to a collective. A maximum message count can optionally be independent or dependent on another variable (e.g. time of day, demographic of user, or behavior history]. A maximum message count can be fixed or variable and can set in any manner, e.g. set manually (e.g. by a collective representative] or set automatically such as setting the maximum count as equal to a variable or as the result of a mathematical formula based on other variables (e.g. a fluctuating variable such as the number of mobile devices inside a specified geo-fence, actions taken by mobile device users (e.g. the number of mobile device users who have RSVP-ed to an event, the number of mobile device users who have redeemed an offer], or any variable derived from external data such as data gathered from an external API (e.g. payment provider], third-party module, website, or other data located anywhere on an internet. Optionally, the variable is derived from another set of filters/rule sets (e.g. nested ste], e.g. referenced internally or defined anywhere.
00199 Optionally, the filter module comprises at least one value restricting the message delivery based on a proximity, distance, or region. Examples would include filtering delivery only to mobile device users within a particular distance from the message sender or collective itself, from a pre-defined region within or outside the collective, movement from any one location to any other location by a particular distance, or movement into or out of a predefined region or geo-space
00200 A filter module can be configured to filter messages in any manner. For example, the filter module can filter a message by providing any of the following steps: block a created message from being sent, block a sent messages from being delivered, or block a received messages from being presented on the mobile device. Accordingly, a filter module can be provided on any of: a message server, a mobile device, or an intermediate server. A server having such a filter module is sometimes referred to herein as a filter server.
00201 A filter module can be used, e.g. to prevent spam and excessive messaging to mobile devices (e.g. from a plurality of competing tenants of a collective}. Through the insight of the inventors, filter modules described herein are surprisingly effective at presenting offers or other messages whithout overwhelming consumers in a manner that retains their interest and attention,
Filtering Based on Demographics and Preferences
00202 Optionally, the filter module provides as a filter criterion, at least one
demographic parameter of the mobile device or user thereof.
00203 Optionally, the demographic parameter is selected from gender, age/birthdate, race/ethnicity, occupation, income, the city, state, county, region, state, or country the mobile user generally considers their "home" or "home base", the area and zip codes the mobile users falls into at that location, their fluent language(s] and preferred native language settings on their smartphone, the type of smartphone they're using (e.g. Apple, Nokia, Samsung], the type of operating system installed on the mobile device using (e.g. iOS, Android, Microsoft], relationship status (e.g. single, divorced, married, dating], family status (e.g. whether the mobile device user has kids, and how many of each gender], whether the mobile device user owns a pet and, the types of pets, hobbies, product interests, category of goods or services interests, what types of products or specific products they already own, what types of food they enjoy, what activities they enjoy indoors or outdoors or socially or professionally, and other types of personal preference questions, whether quantitative, descriptive or multiple-choice in nature, and any parameters based on answers or general information provided by the mobile device user such as hobbies, sexual orientation, athletic level / build type, or physical characteristics relating to physical appearance.
00204 Any of such demographic data can be obtained, e.g. by presenting a series of questions to a mobile device and recording the answers as demographic data.
Filtering Based on Behavior
00205 Optionally, the filter module comprises at least one criterion comprising a behavior history.
00206 Optionally, the behavior history comprises any of:
a. has never received a message from a particular message sender; b. frequently visits a sales board when they first enter a collective;
c. frequently accesses a billboard module when they first enter a collective; d. has visited the collective or merchant a particular number of times so far that week;
e. hasn't visited the collective or merchant in more than a week (or month, or custom-defined period};
f. has received a certain number of offers already that particular day (or week, month, custom-defined period};
g. has demonstrated a certain percentage chance or higher of responding to a message, attending an event, redeeming an offer, traveling to a store, making a purchase, etc.;
h. travels to a higher level floor (e.g. the second and third floor} of a collective but doesn't travel to a particular collective wing associated with a tenant; and
i. has participated in a particular program or service, such as a tenant's VIP club, e-mail newsletter list, social media account(s}, direct mail list, or other type of segmented contact list.
00207 Optionally, the behavior criterion is defined as any behavior taught herein (e.g. behaviors reported on or used as triggers}. 00208 Behavior history can be, e.g. extracted directly from a database from a pre- calculated field or determined/calculated dynamically, in response to the particular query, but using all the of the existing information from the database.
Filtering Based on Message Receipt Count
00209 Optionally, the filter module comprises at least one maximum message receipt count as a filter criterion. The maximum message receipt count is optionally the number or frequency of messages received by a mobile device.
00210 Optionally, the receipt count is any of: sender specific (e.g. the count from a given message sender such as a tenant of a collective], sender non-specific (e.g. the receipt count from all message senders such as all tenants of a collective], sender category of goods or services specific (e.g. the receipt count from all message senders (e.g. tenants] of a given category of goods or services], subject specific (e.g. the receipt count of all messages received about an event], location specific (e.g. the receipt count while the mobile device is in a given portion of a collective], or location non-specific (e.g. the receipt count while the mobile device is in a given portion of a collective] . Optionally, the receipt count is location specific and sender specific or sender category of goods specific.
00211 Optionally, the receipt count is sender non-specific. Optionally, the receipt count is the count of messages received from all message senders or all message senders of a given location (e.g. all tenants of a collective].
00212 Optionally, the receipt count is sender-specific. Optionally, the receipt count is the count of messages received from a given message sender or from all message senders (e.g. tenants of a collective] associated with a given category of goods or services.
Optionally, the receipt count is sender-specific and the maximum message receipt count is different for two or more message senders (e.g. tenants of a collective and/or
administrator of a collective].
00213 Optionally, the receipt count is location-specific. Optionally, the receipt count is the count of messages received by a mobile device at a given location (e.g. within a specified geo-fence, or portion of a collective such as a restroom, food court, entrance, or central location], and optionally the maximum message receipt count is different for different locations (e.g. the max receipt count is higher for the restroom or the food court than at least one other location]. 00214 Optionally, the receipt count is location-specific and sender-specific. Optionally, the receipt count is the count of messages received from a given tenant of a collective or from all tenants of a given category of goods or services while the intended message recipient (i.e. mobile device] is visiting the tenant (e.g. inside a tenant's store] or a tenant of the same category of goods or services. Optionally, the receipt count sender and location specific and the maximum receipt count is greater while the mobile device is visiting the message sender than when the mobile device is not visiting the message sender. For example, the receipt count is the number or frequency of messages received from a tenant while the intended message recipient (i.e. mobile device] is in the tenant's store.
00215 Optionally, the receipt count is subject matter specific, e.g. the receipt count is the count of messages received about a given subject matter (e.g. frequency or number of messages received about a given event]. Optionally, the subject matter is a category of goods or services, a tenant of a collective, or an event, e.g. an event at or in proximity to a collective.
00216 Optionally, the receipt count is location-specific and the maximum receipt count is greater for a first location than a second location, e.g. wherein the first location is a restroom, central location of a collective, or food court. As one example, the filter module can be configured to determine or obtain: a] the location of an intended message recipient (i.e. mobile device], b] the maximum receipt count (e.g. number or frequency] for said location, and c] the receipt count for said mobile device (e.g. number or frequency of messages received by the mobile device], and then filter the message is receipt count is greater than the maximum receipt count.
00217 Optionally, the maximum receipt count is different for different message recipients. Optionally, the maximum receipt count is dependent on any of:
a. frequency of visit of the first mobile device user to a collective or message sender thereof;
a. message conversion rate;
b. whether the message sender is favorite by the first mobile device user ; c. whether the message sender is associated with a category of goods or services in the preferences of the first mobile device user ; d. whether the message sender is recommended by friends of the first mobile device user, optionally wherein the friends are determined by association on a social media module;
e. proximity of the message sender to the first mobile device user; or
f. the number of mobile device users matched by the target profile.
00218 Optionally, the filter module comprises an algorithm configured for:
a. providing a maximum message receipt count;
b. calculating the total number of messages received by a first mobile device; c. comparing the total number of messages received by the first mobile device and the maximum message receipt count;
d. filtering the message if the message count is:
i. greater than the maximum receipt count;
ii. approaching the maximum receipt count (e.g. within a specified count less than the maximum receipt count}; or
iii. likely to exceed the maximum receipt count (e.g. likelihood is a
numerical value calculated by providing a formula with the variables: a] the number of messages that have already been delivered to a particular mobile device, b} the number of messages queued for delivery or the rate at which a mobile device is receiving message, and optionally c} and the mobile device user's average duration of visit}.
00219 Optionally, the maximum message receipt count is a maximum frequency of message receipt, e.g. a maximum message receipt count per unit of time (e.g. day, hour, or duration of mobile device visit to collective}.
Filtering Based on Message Recipient Count
00220 Optionally, the filter module comprises at least one maximum message recipient count as a filter criterion. The message recipient count can be calculated, e.g. by totaling the number of mobile devices matched by a target profile of a message.
Registration Module 00221 Optionally, a system of the present invention comprises a registration module. The registration module comprises code for registering and authenticating a user with the system or with a component thereof (e.g. a message-receiving module, a matching-module, or a message-sending module}. The users optionally comprise a message-recipient, a message-sender, or both.
00222 Optionally, registering a user with the sale system comprises providing user information. Optionally, the user information comprises one or more (e.g. each] of: user name, user address, user phone number or area code, user email address, and payment information.
00223 Optionally, the registration module passes user information to a message-sending module (e.g. to enable the tenant user to create and send messages] or a message-receiving module (e.g. to enable the mobile device user to receive messages from a message sender}.
00224 Systems of the present invention comprise at least one module that sends or receives information to/from a human user ('user module'}. For example, a message- sending can create a message based on input from a computer (e.g. mobile device} of a message-sender, a matching module can create target profile based on input from a computer of a message-sender, and a message-receiving module can present messages to a message-recipient (e.g. mall shopper} on a mobile device.
00225 The user module is any module that comprises code configured to provide a graphic user interface (GUI} operable to allow a user of a mobile device or message server to interact with the other modules of the system.
00226 Optionally, a first user module is provided for interfacing a message-recipient on a mobile device and a second user module for interfacing a message-sender on a computer (e.g. mobile device}.
00227 An exemplary user module is configured to:
a. receive information from another module or line of code;
b. present information to a user (e.g. a message, a list of choices or options such a list of selectable targeting parameters for selection by a message-recipient or a message-sender}; c. prompt the user to provide a user input;
d. accept user input; and
e. transmit the user input to another module or line
00228 Optionally, a user module is a mobile phone application. Examples of application formats include iPhone and android operating systems. Such a user module can be configured to interact with (receive data from and/or transmit data to] a local or remote module selected from a message-receiving module, a message-sending module, a matching module, and a reporting module.
00229 Optionally, the user module is a web browser (e.g. internet explorer or Mozilla fire fox}. A web browser is useful, for example, when interacting modules (e.g. message- sending, message-receiving, matching, or reporting module] are provided on a server remote from the computer having the user module, e.g. when the interacting module is configured as web-based applications.
00230 Optionally, the user module is configured to accept a user input selected from: option selection, text. In such embodiments, the user module can be configured for communicating with one or more buttons (e.g. touchscreen buttons] and/or a text input device (e.g. keyboard or touchscreen].
00231 Optionally, the GUI provides the user with an efficient and user-friendly display of data provided by or communicated within the system. Optionally, the GUI comprises one or more customizable frames or views having interactive fields, pull-down lists, and/or buttons operated by the user.
00232 A system of the present invention can optionally comprise a reporting module configured to create a report based on the data in the database, or a subset of data in the database.
00233 Optionally, the reporting module is configured to provide a report to a message sender (e.g. user of a messaging server such as a tenant of a collective].
00234 A report can be presented to a user of a reporting module in any manner, e.g. displaying the report on a screen or printing the report. 00235 Through insight of the inventors, reporting modules describe herein provide one or more superior properties. For example, in some embodiments, merchants or other tenents of a collective can use the reporting module to determine the effective nesss of the of their mobile advertising and can optionally even use the report to tailor non-electronic campeigns such billboard campeigns outside their storefront and measure the
effectiveness. As another non-limiting example, a collective representative (e.g. mall owner) can optional iy use the reporting module to get a coilective-wide view of their collective, and make appropriate changes to the system or to the colletive itself, to provide a more enjoyable shopping experience to consumers and a more profitable use of the system by the tenants. Thus collective representatives can optionally use reports to establish an ecosystem with known cause and effects, e.g. effects dependent and even independent of mobile messages sent.
00236 The reporting module can be configured to report any data, for example, data obtained from the database, or calculations made therefrom. Optionally, the data in a report comprise any of the following data types: mobile device data, message sender data, or a combination thereof.
00237 Optionally, the reporting module is configured to create a report of mobile device data. Examples of mobile device data that can be reported include:
a. location data;
b. time data;
c. targeting parameter data;
d. behavior data;
00238 Optionally, the report comprises mobile device location data. Optionally, the report comprises trends in location data (e.g. location tracking data, traffic data, time- specific traffic data], movement data (e.g. travel history], or a combination thereof.
Optionally, the report comprises location tracking information correlated with time, e.g. tracking information can comprise a plurality of movement data, each comprising a location identifier corresponding to a location (e.g. GPS location] and a time identifier corresponding to the time the respective mobile device was at said location. Optionally, the time identifier indicates the local time, the relative time (e.g. 3min after trip start], or an amount of time at a given location (e.g. 30 sec at a GPS coordinate}. Location data can be used to generate a report that provides, for example any of the following data: most trafficked areas (e.g. hallways, wings, or floors] and optionally the time-correlated traffic, most used entrance, most used exit, most congested areas in a collective, and most common resting points for mobile device users. Optionally, the location data comprises traffic data, e.g. number or rate of mobile devices traveling into or past a designated location (e.g. a tenant of a collective], percentage of mobile devices in a geographic area (e.g. collective] that enter a portion of the geographic area (e.g. tenant], a plurality of locations that two or more mobile devices traveled to (e.g. which two or more tenants share customers], or the busiest times (i.e. times with the most mobile devices] for a given location. Accordingly, such reports can be used to provide highly detailed location data that will inform decision makers, e.g. decision makers of the following planning decisions: best times and/or locations for marketing campaigns, best placement for digital displays, vitrine and other decorative items, bathrooms, ATM's and other points of interest, advertising placement; kiosks, information desks, security posts (e.g. police, theft recovery, security personnel, or emergency services] mall/store maps storage areas, and WiFi or other hardware signal emitters/receivers; planning for collective or tenant maps (e.g. types or level of detail of information provided therein]; planning for tenant parking construction; selections for message / alert triggering locations, tenant placement and lease negations. With the teachings provided herein, the skilled artisan will recognize numerous other decisions that can be made from the data collected in reports.
00239 Optionally, the report comprises time data, e.g. time of mobile device users' visit to a given geographic location or login using their mobile device. Location data can be used to generate a report that provides, for example any of the following data: most popular or least popular time of day for travel to a location (e.g. collective or tenant thereof], most popular times of the day for sales to be made, history of traffic surges throughout the day, and most popular days of the week, the duration of a visit to a location (e.g. a tenant or a collective]. Accordingly, such reports can be used, e.g. to improve marketing, staffing, and other planning decisions and construct more relevant marketing messages, or any chronology-dependent planning decisions (e.g., optimizing business hours and staffing decisions, timing product launches and events, routing automobile and pedestrian traffic, scheduling facilities maintenance and janitorial services] 00240 Optionally, the report comprises mobile device targeting parameter data.
Optionally, the targeting parameter data is based on any targeting parameters taught herein, e.g. preference data or demographics data.
00241 Optionally, the report comprises mobile device behavior data, e.g. message response data, message-conversion data, social interaction data, spending data, visit data, milestone data, customer loyalty data, and mobile device use data.
00242 Optionally, the report comprises behavior data comprises mobile device use data comprising a description of an action taken by one or more mobile devices in response to the message, where that action occurs within the physical environment that mobile device is within, taken by the mobile device user (e.g. shopper walks to a particular store but does not enter, shopper walks up to and into a particular store, shopper walks up to a particular product, shopper walks over to an advertised event}.
00244 Optionally, the report comprises mobile device message-response data.
Optionally, the message-response data is based on any actions taken by a mobile device or user thereof upon receiving a message, e.g. movement towards a particular tenant upon receiving a message from the tenant or sharing of a message on a social media module such as Facebook. For example, the message-conversion data can include movement data, purchase data, social interaction (e.g. message sharing], or any data that indicates a response to the message. As one example, the report can display the message conversion rate for a given message (e.g. the number of mobile devices that responded to a message relative to the total number of message recipients}. As another example, the report can present a description of the action taken by a mobile device user in response to the message, (e.g. mobile device travels to a particular tenant (e.g. store] but does not enter, mobile device travels into a particular store, mobile device travels to a particular product, or mobile device travels to an advertised event}. As another example the report provides number or rate of mobile devices that follow a link directly to a tenant website or tenant application.
00245 As another example, the report can present any message conversion data that provides one of the following:
a. percentage of mobile devices who visit a location vs. number of sales; b. percentage of mobile devices that receive a message vs. the number of mobile devices that enter a location associated with the message (e.g. a tenant that sent a message};
c. percentage of mobile devices that receive a message vs. the number of
mobile devices that respond or interact with the message (e.g. redeem an offer provided by a message or RSVP to an event described by a message}; d. percentage or number of mobile devices that share a message (e.g. offer or event}, e.g. using a social media module;
e. time of day with the greatest message-conversion rate or message- conversion count;
f. which messages provides the greatest message conversion rate; g. message conversion rate; and
h. message conversion rate, wherein the conversion is a purchase or offer redemption.
00246 Optionally, the report comprises mobile device spending data, e.g. spending history data for mobile device users at a collective, tenant, or message sender.
00247 Optionally, the report comprises mobile device visit data, e.g. visit history data. For example, the report can provide the visit frequency, time elapsed since last visit, time elapsed since first visit, slope of visit frequency vs time curve, or visit duration of mobile devices, or trends calculated therefrom.
00248 Optionally, the report comprises milestone data, e.g. milestone history of mobile device users. The milestone data that can be reported includes, e.g. milestones based on achievement, trends, history, and/or activity of mobile devices or mobile device user, or calculations produced therefrom.
00249 Optionally, the report comprises customer loyally data. For example, the customer loyalty data can be any data or calculations made therefrom that show any of:
a. how many new customers (i.e. mobile devices} have been visiting a location; b. how often are mobile devices coming back (e.g. repeat rate);
c. how often are they sharing messages using a social media module; d. what types of messages are being shared using a social media module, e.g. offers, events, sales, or coupons; e. the number of purchases made per visit of a mobile device to a location (e.g. tenant]
f. frequency of visit to a location; and
g. recency of visit.
00250 Optionally, the report is generated by or presented to a message-sender, the messaging server, or a user of the messaging server (e.g. on mobile device of a message- sender}.
00251 Optionally, the report comprises data supplied by third-parties, e.g. social media sources, payment services, and point-of-sale ('POS'} systems.
00252 Optionally, the data in the report comprise calculations made from other data. Examples of calculations that can be included in a report include totals, averages, and correlations of multiple data sets. Examples of correlations that can be included in a report include any correlation made between two data types, e.g. include trends, graphs, charts, and matrices. For example a report can comprise correlations of a first data type (e.g. message conversion rate] with a second data type (e.g. targeting parameter data}. As another example, a correlation can be provided that evaluates causal and non-casual, associative relationships between certain data sets or groups of users.
00253 Optionally, the report comprises a correlation between a first data type and a second data type. Optionally, the first and second data types are any of the the pairs listed in Table 1.
Table 1 Correlations
00255 Optionally, the reporting module is configured to report the number of message- recipient mobile devices in a designated location at a given local time. Optionally, the report is generated in response to a query initiated by the collective representative or the report is sent to the collective representative (e.g. messaging server or mobile device of a collective representative] when said number of mobile devices is greater than a threshold level. Optionally, the designated location is selected from: the geographic area defined by the collective and a geographic area within the collective; wherein said a geographic area within the collective is smaller in area than the geographic area defined by the collective. Optionally, the geographic area within the collective is an entrance of the collective.
00256 Optionally, the reporting module is configured to produce a report containing one more or all report data selected from: location data, time data, traffic data (e.g. tenant traffic or collective traffic], loyalty data, demographic data, message conversion data, and mobile device user (e.g. shopper] behavior history. The following examples are optional data that can be included in a report.
• Collective Traffic Data:
o Traffic in portions of the collective (e.g. entry and/or exit point, wings, floors, hallways, common areas, or a combination thereof]
o Highest traffic exit points, entry points, wings, hallways, or floors, and optionally the day or time specific,
o most congested areas in the collective
o most common "resting points" (e.g. determined using average duration of a mobile device in a given area].
• Time Data:
o most popular time of day and/or days of the week with highest and/or lowest number of mobile device users at a collective or tenant o time of day with highest and/or lowest number of sales? o time(s) of traffic surges throughout the day
• Tenant Traffic Data:
o number of mobile device users walking past the tenant (e.g. store)
o number of mobile device users walking into the tenant (e.g. combined with conversion rate)
o number of mobile device users who inter-link directly to store website or app. o time mobile device users arrived or spent at tenant, and optionally time mobile device user arrived or spent at tenant
o number of sales (e.g. combined with conversion rate)
o highest and /or lowest traffic days
o highest and /or lowest traffic times
o percentage a mobile device user will visit a given tenant while at the collective
(e.g. aggregates all users)
o "Hours of Operation" view shows which times would work best
o which 2 or more tenants share mobile device users (i.e. in store-customers)?
• Customer Loyalty Data:
o How many new customers (i.e. mobile device users) have been coming (i.e. first time visitors)
o How often customers are coming back (repeat rate)
o how often are customers sharing things with their friends, e.g. on social media app
■ What and how often are messages shared between customers, e.g. messages such as
• special ofers
o frequency of visit
o recency of visit
o frequency of purchase
• Message Conversion Rate Data:
o Percentage of people who come in vs. people who buy
o Percentage of people who receive a message vs. people who walk to that store o Percentage of people who receive a message vs. people who respond
■ Response could include redeeming an offer, RSVP to an event o Percentage of people who share a message or offer or event
o Best time of day to send messages (e.g. most customers present at the mall) o Best time of day to send messages (e.g. most effective based on history) o Most popular/ effective messaging promotions
• Mobile device user information or behavior
o Spending habits
o Shopper Insight answers
o Badge achievements
o Travel patterns
o Sharing behavior
o Consumer Confidence: This would gauge long term behavioral changes over market fluctuation in physical space, and really a long term product result. o Time and action patterns In App
o In App inter-linking to online and 3rd party apps; and its correlation between physical travel patterns and purchasing
o Social media behavior
o Shopper response patterns to:
■ app functions
■ insight questions
■ game features
o Shows the best locations to place in-the mall signage, for new / repeat customers
o Window Displays: Test different window displays to determine the most effective at increasing store walk-in traffic and sale conversions.
■ Can include QR codes
o Best zip codes to send direct mail campaigns to
o What search terms to advertise with on search engines
o What brands or products to carry (e.g. based on what users search for] o Demographic breakdowns for their customers, and the mall's population at large
• Shopper Information & Behavior
• Spending habits
• Shopper profile, insight and survey answers
• Travel/location/movement history and patterns
• Sharing history and behavior
• Consumer Confidence: e.g to gauge long term behavioral changes over market fluctuation in physical space, and really a long term product result.
• Badge achievements in relation to game-play or the earning of points.
• Time and patters of mobile device use
• Use of mobile device to inter-link to online and 3rd party apps; and its correlation between physical travel patterns and purchasing
• Shopper response patterns to any of:
■ functions of modules on the mobile device
■ insight questions
• game features 57 Optionally, the report comprises traffic data and loyalty data. 00258 Optionally, the report comprises location data and time data. Optionally, the report comprises location data, time data, and any of:
a. Traffic data and/or loyally data;
b. Behavior data; or
c. Messaging conversion rate.
00259 Optionally, the report comprises a] time data and/or location data, and b] traffic and/or loyalty data.
00260 Optionally, the report data comprises tracking data and/or targeting parameter data (e.g. location, time, and/or demographics or preferences of mobile device users}. Additionally or alternatively, the report data comprises derived data. The derived data is optionally any data that can be derived from other data such as tracking data and/or targeting parameter data. For example, the derived data can be derived using trends, calculations, averages, or percentages, charts, graphics, and/or maps. Examples of useful derived data include shopper Information & behavior, message conversion rates, and customer loyalty.
00261 Optionally, the report comprises any of the data or calculations listed in Table 2, e.g. targeting parameters, demographics, preferences, or other data associated with a mobile device or user thereof.
00262 Optionally, the report comprises any of the individual behavior history, aggregate behavior history, or message receipt history. For example, the report can comprise data or calculations listed in Table 3.
00263 Optionally, the report comprises message receipt history. For example, the report can comprise data or calculations listed in Table 4.
Table 2 Examplary Report Data
Table 3 Examplary Report Data
# visits week % prox msgs rec.
# visits month Conversion History (e.g. # prox msgs red.
# visits year Number or frequency of % prox msgs red.
% visits by day New users # temp msgs rec.
% visits week Unique users % temp msgs rec.
% visits month Repeat users # temp msgs red.
% visits year Active users % temp msgs red.
Mobile Device Use Non-active users
took photo Users no longer using app
shared photo Users who deleted the app
scanned bar code WiFi vs. cell signal
# scans Carrier type
received offer Phone type
redeemed offer Phone model
downloaded app iOS version
run app Language setting
app in foreground Retina vs. non-retina
app in background App version
# offers redeemed Positioning: GPS vs WiFi
time offer redeemed
day offer redeemed Average photo load time
week offer redeemed
month offer redeemed URL tracking (external)
offers redeemed by cat.
% offers redeemed App starts / stops / errors
offers redeemed by cat.
time offer redeemed % who took photos
day offer redeemed % who scan bar code
week offer redeemed
month offer redeemed traffic flow pattern
employed social media traffic by level
traffic by area
traffic by time
traffic by day employed social media, e.g.:
open table instagram
# of times by kind
% of use by kind
shared with individual
share with group
number of shares
received social share
acted on social share interacted with ad
number of ads
number of int. by cat.
% by category
acted on ad sent meet-up request
# of people in meet up
received meet-up request
Table 4 Examplary Report Data
Search Engine History
# total searches
# total search screens
average search depth
average search depth by category, shopping center, merchant, or brand searched keywords
searched categories searched shopping centers
searched products search filters used most often
% who search, e.g.: searched for:
escalator / elevator
# of times per user
% of searches by type
00266 Optionally, the reporting module is configured to limit the data available for reporting, i.e. to report on a subset of data recorded in the database.
00267 Optionally, the system comprises a plurality of reporting module types or reporting module account types, e.g. the system is configured for at least two different types of reporting module users, wherein each type has different report limitations. For example, the system can provide a first reporting module or reporting module account type for a first user type (e.g. collective representative] and a second reporting module or reporting module account type for a second user type (e.g. tenant of a collective}.
Optionally, a first user type can generate a report based on any available data in the database and a second user type is limited to generating reports based on a subset of data (e.g. tracking data from common areas of a collective and areas within a first tenant's retail store but not areas within a second's tenant's retail store}. 00268 Optionally, the reporting module is configured to allow a first reporting module user (e.g. collective representative] to put limitations or restrictions on a second message sender (e.g. tenant] with respect to the data available for reporting. For example, the system can be configured to allow a collective representative to choose the data that can be presented to a tenant.
00269 Reports provided by a reporting module can be used in any manner.
00270 One of the many advantages of reports taught herein is the optional use of report data to improve the effectiveness of advertising and marketing campaigns. Remarkably, not only can the report data enhance campaigns that utilize systems of the invention (e.g. sending messages that provide events, coupons, discounts, and other offers], but also enhance campaigns using any method, such as conventional direct mail campaigns, signage, window displays, and many others. Examplary reports can be used to accomplish any of: o Show the best locations to place in-the mall signage, for new / repeat customers o Test different window displays to determine the most effective at increasing store walk-in traffic and sale conversions
o Optimum search terms to to include in websites for targeting by search engines
o Identify brands or products to carry (based on what users search for] o Provide demographic breakdowns for customers, and the population of a
geographic environment (e.g. collective] by demographic (e.g. region, area code, zip code, income, or family status], e.g. to identify marking campaigns targets or targeting parameters for future message targeting.
00271 In one embodiment an action is taken in response to the reports. Useful actions include, for example, modifying a message (e.g. content or targeting parameters], modifying prices (e.g. of goods described by messages], modifying marketing campaigns, or managing staff (e.g. employees of a collective (e.g. mall] or tenant thereof] based on the report (e.g. delegating additional staff to a busy mall entrance]. As one example, a tenant optionally correlates effectiveness of a message with the selected target profile and modifies the target profile to target a more perceptive audience of mobile device users. As another example, when the report comprises behavior of mobile device users and message senders (e.g. tenants or collective representative] can select a target profile that comprises behavior history as a targeting parameter. 00272 Accordingly, reports can be used to increase shopper spending, tenant loyalty, and collective (e.g. shopping mall] revenue, and collective efficiency.
00273 A system of the present invention optionally comprises an invoice module configured for tracking a message sender's use of a messaging server.
00274 An invoice module can be used, e.g. to track and invoice message senders for their use of the system. For example, message senders can be charged on a per-use, a per- message, or a per message recipient basis.
00275 Optionally, the invoice module is configured to track actions selected from:
sending of a message, matching of a target profile to targeting parameters of a database, receipt of a message by a mobile device.
00276 Optionally, the invoice module is configured to determine the number of message-recipients matched to a target profile by a matching module. Optionally, the invoice module is further configured to present to the message sender (e.g. tenant of a collective] the result of said number determination or a fee associated with said number determination. In such an embodiment, the message sender can be presented with a cost estimation which is optionally dependent on the number of mobile devices matched to a target profile. Such a feature optionally provides an advantage by motivating message senders to select more narrow target profiles, thereby reducing spam or excessive message-sending (e.g. by competing tenants of a collective}.
00277 Optionally, the invoice module is configured to invoice message senders for their use of the system. For example, an electronic bill can be presented on the message sender's computer (e.g. presented on a local display of a messaging server}.
00279 Optionally, the system comprises one or more additional modules. For example, the system can comprise one or more modules that provide on the mobile devices of message recipients any of the following: a store directory and/or map of a collective (e.g. as depicted in Figure 5}, shopping list, parking spot locator, parking pin dropping, peer-peer (message recipient-recipient] chat program or social media module (including providing a social media add-on or API (e.g. Facebook or Twitter] for a module provided on the mobile devices of the mobile device users], info buttons for important areas (ATM's, elevators, bathrooms, info desks], event subscription and notification, public transportation schedules, and a VIP/rewards program. Other useful functions that can be provided on the mobile devices of message-recipients include: mapping technology, geo-tagging and geo- fencing, social "check-in" functionality, integration with social media in general, 3D rendering or augmented realit systems (e.g. as used with Yelp's "Monocle" or the mobile app "Layar"], advanced advertising capabilities and media, barcode scanning and generation technology, and NFC ("Near Field Communication"] and other payment technologies that will support purchases and subscriptions using a mobile device of a message recipient.
00280 Optionally, a social media module is provided on the mobile device. The social media module can be, e.g. any module configured to allow users to interact with each other or create and share content with one or more networked computers. Optionally, the social media module is configured for any of: instant messaging, peer-to-peer messaging (e.g. sending a message from one mobile device of the system to another mobile device of the system], a chat program, posting to a common area (e.g. forum or billboard], sharing of messages or message content (e.g. sharing a message received from a tenant or other message sender], "liking" or "favoriting" a person, place, or message sender (e.g. tenant], "checking in" (e.g. to a place or event], or creating a "friend", setting a meeting location, and viewing a map of friend locations. Optionally, the social media module is configurd as any of: a forums, a blog, a wikis, a social network, a podcast, or comprises one or more of photographs or pictures, video, rating and social bookmarking. Optionally, the social media module is configured to allow mobile devices of the system to interact with each other. Optionally, the social media module is a third party application (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest] wherein the mobile device is configured for integration with the third part application (e.g. via an Application programming interface ('API']. Optionally, the use of a social media module is tracked (e.g. sharing of a message with a friend or other mobile device], e.g. to produce message-interaction data.
00281 Optionally, a map module is provided on the mobile device. The map module can be any module that provides a map (e.g. graphical map] of a geographic location, e.g. a collective of tenants. Optionally, the map module further comprises a navigation module. The navigation module can be any module that provides directions from one location to another location and/or determines the location of the mobile device on the map.
Optionally, the map module is configured to show the location of a tenant, good, or service associated with a receivd message (e.g. the location of GPS coordinates contained in a message content}. Map modules and navigation modules are well known in the art (e.g. Google maps}.
00282 Optionally, a store directory module is provided on the mobile device. The store directory module can be any module that provides a list of tenants of a collective.
Optionally, the store directory module provides the category of goods or services associated with one or more tenants.
00283 Optionally, a parking module is provided on the mobile device. The parking module can be any module that provides one or more of: a map of a parking lot, setting of a parking pin at the location (e.g. GPS coordinates} of a mobile device, or showing locations of vacant parking spots or portions of a parking lot with less traffic (e.g. calculated by the number of parking pins set in a given area by a plurality of mobile devices}.
00284 Optionally, the system comprises additional modules (e.g. any described above} and the activity of the mobile device users on the additional module is tracked or monitored. Optionally, data is collected and used to provide a report (e.g. by a reporting module}. For example, social interaction (e.g. inter-user messaging} or other activity such as "checking in" and "sharing" on a social media module (e.g. on Facebook} can be tracked and presented as behavior in a report or used a trigger to send a message (e.g. to target users to tend to frequently use social media}. As another example, a payment module or message (e.g. discount} redemption module can be used to track sales and the data presented in a report. As another example, a parking space module (e.g. where users can drop a location pin to remember parking spot location} can be used to track where mobile device users park and correlated with other actions (e.g. tenants visited}.
00285 Optionally, a module is provided and configured for performing any steps, methods, or functions, taught herein. With the teachings provided herein, the skilled artisan can readily produce such modules without undue experimentation. 00286 Optionally, the system comprises a collective of tenants and the system further comprises a billboard module configured for providing a list of billboard messages on mobile device users. The billboard messages can be any deals, events, offers, or
information that are provided by the tenants or the collective. The billboard module is configured to receive inputs from a plurality of message senders (e.g. tenants or collective representative] and compile a list of billboard messages from the inputs, e.g. for saving on a server. The billboard module is further configured to present one or more of the billboard messages on the mobile devices of the mobile device users, e.g. at the request of the mobile device users (e.g. upon arriving at a collective, mobile device user can use their mobile device to request the billboard messages from a server].
00287 Optionally, the system comprises a behavior-tracking module configured for tracking behavior of mobile device users, e.g. message conversion history, spending history, visit history, milestone history, travel history, use of social media module, billboard module, or social interaction. The behavior-tracking module is optionally used to produce behavior history tracking parameters and/or report data comprising mobile device user behavior. Optional Configurations
Optionally, the system comprises a plurality of message servers or messaging modules or message server user accounts. Additionally or alternatively, the system comprises a plurality of reporting modules or reporting module user accounts. These embodiments provide different levels of control or access for different users (e.g. a tenant such as a mall merchant vs. a collective representative such as a mall administrator].
Goods or Services
00288 Optionally, the message sent to the mobile device user is associated with one or more goods or services ('goods']. For example, the message can contain an advertisement, a coupon, a voucher, or a gift card, and optionally, the message is sent from a computer of a tenant.
00289 Optionally, the product is any of: an apparel article, a consumable, a tool, an electronic device, a home appliance, and kitchen appliance, and a food substance.
00290 Optionally, the product is an apparel article. Examples include clothes (e.g. shirts, pants, or outerwear], jewelry, shoes, and fashion articles. 00291 Optionally, the product is a consumable. Examples include grocery items such as food or cleaning supplies, cosmetics, drugs, and disposable products.
00292 Optionally, the product is a tool. Examples include appliances such as kitchenware and kitchen appliances, gardening tools, and automotive tools.
00293 Optionally, the product is an electronic device. Examples include phones, computers, computer accessories, media players, gaming consoles, and televisions.
00294 Optionally, the product is not a media (e.g. audio and/or video] product, a sample of which is presented during the media event. For example, if the media event comprises an audio sample, the product is not a song (or album] comprising the audio sample.
00295 Optionally, a system of the present invention is configured for use by a plurality of user types. The user types can differ in any manner, e.g. by using or interfacing with different modules or servers of systems of the present invention (e.g. a message recipient and message sender] or by using or interfacing the same server or module but with different limitations or options (e.g. collective representative and tenant type accounts that both use a messaging module and/or reporting module]. Optionally, the system is configured for at least one message recipient (e.g. mobile device user or user of a message- receiving module] and at least one message sender (e.g. user of a messaging server or message-sending module]. Such a system can be configured, e.g. by providing at least one mobile device comprising a module for receiving messages and further providing a networked computer comprising a module for sending messages.
00296 Optionally, the system is configured for at least one reporter (e.g. user of a reporting server or reporting module].
00297 Optionally, the system is configured for use by a plurality of different types of message senders, reporters, or both. Optionally, the system is configured for use by a plurality of user types, wherein each user type is a both a message sender and a reporter.
00298 Systems with multiple users can be obtained, e.g. by providing any of: a unique computer for each user, a unique module for each user, or a unique account for each user. With the teachings provided herein, the skilled artisan can readily provide such configurations. For example, each message sender, reporter, or message recipient type user can have a unique computer (e.g. mobile device], a unique module (e.g. phone app] , or a unique account for using a networked server. The term message sender is sometimes used herein refer to a computer or a messaging server account (e.g. message received from a message sender) or the user thereof. Similarly, the term message recipient is sometimes used herein to refer to the mobile device (e.g. location of the message recipient) or the mobile device user (e.g. demographics of the message recipient), which will be evident by the context in which the terms are used.
00299 Optionally, a system of the present invention is configured for use in a collective of tenants. Optionally, the system is configured for at least one tenant representative type user and at least one collective representative type user. The term tenant is sometimes used herein to refer to either a geographic location (e.g. a retail store within a shopping mall) or the user (e.g. computer, module, or account) associated with the geographic location (e.g.. a message sender or reporter associated with a retail store within a collective), which will be evident by the context in which the term is used.
00300 Optionally, the system is configured for the following user types:
1. low end tenant (e.g. local employees of "Retailers", "Vendors", "Service Provider" or "Restaurant" in a collective);
2. high end tenant, wherein each high end tenant is associated with one or more low end tenants (e.g. a district or company-wide manager of tenants of the same company),
3. Collective Representative (i.e. representative of a Mall, Casino, Airport, or Hotel)
00301 Optionally, the system is configured for one or more of:
• A first user, account, or computer type (e.g. low end Tenant) that can do any of: o control the Information (offers, events, contact info, store picture and description, etc) published to message recipients for their particular location (e.g. within or in proximity to a geo-fence associated with a tenant). o view reports collected for their particular location or tenant.
o Send messages to users anywhere in a collective or sub-portion thereof (e.g. defined geo-fence)
• A second user, account, or computer type (e.g. high end Tenant) that can do any of: o View and override any of the Information published (e.g. message sent) by the first user, account, or computer type or set message limitations or target profile limitations on the first user, account, or computer type,
o If a tenant has locations in multiple collectives (e.g. a Nike store in different malls), the second user, account, or computer type can view the reports across all of said locations.
o Review, modify, or cancel scheduled messages created by the first user, account, or computer type
o Send messages anywhere that the first user, account, or computer type can o Create, edit and remove new users, accounts, or computers of the first user, account, or computer type, and set privileges in regards to message content or targeting parameters, and available data that can be included in first user, account, or computer.
o View use of the system by the first user, account, or computer type (e.g. low end tenant).
• A third user, account, or computer type (Collective Representative) configured to do any of:
o View and override (e.g. cancel) any Information published (e.g. messages sent) by the first and second user, account, or computer type;
o View reports across all locations (e.g. the entire collective or the geo-space at large) or all tenants of a collective
o View report data that is not viewable to the first and second user, account, or computer types
o Review, modify, or cancel scheduled messages or triggered messages o Send messages to users anywhere in a collective (e.g. shopping mall) o Create, edit and remove new tenants or new first or second user, account, or computer types (e.g. high and/or low end) and set privileges in regards to what they can publish (e.g. set message limitations or target profile limitations), their messaging privileges, or what report data they can view
00302 The following examples are non-limiting illustrations of examplary embodiments of the present invention.
Example 1 System
00303 A system is provided. The system comprises a database server, a messaging server, and a mobile device connected by a network (e.g. internet), as depicted in Figure 1 or Figure 2. As one example, the messaging server can be remote from the database server (e.g. a computer or mobile device operated by a message sender), as depicted in Figure 1. As an alternative example, the message server and the database server can be the same computer, as depicted in Figure 2. 00304 The system is useful for a sending a message from the messaging server to the mobile device if the mobile device or user thereof (message-recipient] matches a target profile associated with the message appearing in media events presented to the user (e.g. via television broadcast}.
00305 The database server comprises a database of entries, wherein each entry corresponds to a respective mobile device or user thereof and comprises: a unique user identifier and a plurality of targeting parameters associated with the mobile device user corresponding to the user identifier.
00306 The system further comprises a tracking module configured to receive targeting parameters from the message-recipient, determine the location of the mobile device of the message-recipient, and transmit the targeting parameters and the location to the database. The tracking module is, for example, provided on the mobile device of the message- recipient or on the database server. The tracking module optionally records history of the mobile device or user thereof, e.g. responses to messages.
00307 The system further comprises a message-receiving module configured for receiving messages from the message server or mobile device of a message-sender and presenting the messages to the mobile device of the message recipient. The message- receiving module is, for example, provided on the mobile device of the message-recipient.
00308 The system further comprises a message-creating module configured to create a message based on input (e.g. text entry] from a message-sender using the messaging server.
00309 The database server can comprise a matching module configured to access the database and compare and match with the database of entries, a target profile selected by a message-sender using a messaging server, which may be different than the database server, as depicted in Figure 1, or the same as the database server as depicted in Figure 2.
00310 The system further comprises a message-sending module configured to send the created message to the mobile device matching the target profile.
00311 In one embodiment, the system comprises a plurality of message-sending computers, e.g. a plurality of messaging servers or a plurality of mobile devices operated by different message senders. Optionally, a plurality of the message-sending computers are operated by tenants of a collective and at least message-sending computer operated by a representative of the collective (e.g. mall administrator}.
00312 Optionally, the system further comprises a filter module configured to filter messages once they have been matched to target recipients by the matching module.
00313 Optionally, the system further comprises a reporting module configured to generate a report, e.g. of data obtained by the tracking module.
00314 As an alternative to a database, the system can be configured for sending data directly from module to module without permanently saving tracking data to a database.
00315 Figure 19 depicts an exemplary flow of information among optional modules of the system. Note that the database server is not shown, but may optionally be coupled to (i.e. receive data] from any module, e.g. the tracking module can store targeting parameter, location data, message responses in a database before transmitting the data to other modules of the system such as the reporting module or matching module.
Example 2 System
00316 A system of the invention is provided as described in Example 1 and configured for use in a collective (e.g. shopping mall) of tenants (e.g. retail stores ore service providers). Specifically, the system is configured for secure, password-protected access by mobile devices and messages senders via internet to one or more networked servers that comprise modules for message creation, message receipt, and reporting.
00317 As one example of a mobile device, a cellular phone (e.g. smartphone) is carried by a shop. The cellular phone users downloads a phone application configured for use with the messaging system.
00318 The phone application comprises a tracking module configured for prompting phone user to identify a set of targeting parameters associated with the mobile phone. Specifically, the user identifies his or her demographics (e.g. age, gender, and residence location) and preferences (e.g. favorite categories of goods or services, favorite tenants, blocked goods or services, and blocked tenants). Optionally, the tracking module is configured to continuously determine the location of the phone (e.g. using a local GPS device). The targeting parameters and location are sent over the network to the database, in which each phone or user thereof is identified by a unique identifier. 00319 The phone application also comprises a message-receiving module configured to receive and present messages from the messaging server.
00320 The messaging server is configured for access by a plurality of users, tenant employees and at least one collective representative. The messaging server comprises an application having a message creating module, a matching module, and a trigger module. The message-creating module is configured to accept a user input (e.g. text input) and create a message content based on the input, e.g. as depicted in Figure 7. The matching module is configured to accept a user input (e.g. selection of options) and create a target profile comprising one or more targeting parameters (e.g. demographics and/or preferences) based on the input, e.g. as depicted in Figure 8. The trigger module is configured to accept a user input (e.g. selection of options) to identify one or more triggers that cause sending of the message, e.g. as depicted in Figure 9.
Example 3 Message Sending, Message Receiving, and Reporting
00321 As one example of a message server use in a system (e.g. as detailed in Example 2), a vendor in a food court produces a new batch of cookies on a regular basis (e.g once every other hour) and each time a new batch is created, they want to send out a message announcing the new batch. Alternatively, as another example the vendor has a batch of cookies that they need to throw out if not sold in an hour, so they send a message announcing a 50% discount on cookies.
00322 First, the vendor would log into their secure online account of the messaging server system, where they would compose the content of their message using a message- creating module, e.g. "FRESH CHOCOLOATE CHIP COOKIES... GET THEM WHILE THEY'RE HOT!" or "PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES HALF OFF FOR THE NEXT HALF HOUR!".
00323 Next, using the matching module, the vendor would specify whether they want to broadcast the message to everyone within the collective, or target the message only a limited segment of those people. The vender can choose a greater the number of targeting parameters to narrow in on a specific recipient list; especially for real-time (instant) messages. Optionally, the vendor is charged on a per-recipient basis. Such a feature can be used, e.g. to reduce spam or broadly-targeted messages. Optionally, the matching module informs the user of the number of matched recipients to allow the vendor to narrow the target profile by adding targeting parameters. 00324 Next, the vendor uses the trigger module to define triggers for sending the message. For example, the vendor can choose triggers selected from: single a date/time, a proximity to a location associated with the vendor (e.g. the doorway to the vendor or a geo- fence defined by the vendor such as the walls of the vendor's store], a behavior, or a periodically recurring (e.g. every 5 minutes}.
00325 Next, the vendor clicks "send" to cause the sending module to send out the message (or activate the message for sending upon an occurrence of a triggering event}.
00326 Next, message recipient^} (i.e. mobile devices} that match the target profile and optional trigger receive the message through a message receiving module as a push notification or in-app notification, as depicted in Figure 10, which provides the mobile device user the options to "read more" or to "ignore" (i.e. close} the message.
00327 Next, the message response of the message recipients} will be tracked and recorded in the database. For example, clicking "read more", traveling to the vendor, or sharing the message will cause a message-conversion to be created while clicking "ignore" will create a message-non response.
00328 Optionally, the system comprises a reporting server comprising a report module. Using the reporting server, the vendor can view a report to determine how effective their messages were to those recipients. Optionally, the report provides a correlation between message response and location. For example, Figure 11 and Figure 12 provide reports for the "half off and "fresh hot cookies" messages, respectively. As an illustrative example, Figure 11 provides a correlation between the location of the mobile device when the message received and the response rate. The conversion rate (labeled as "conversion" with a value of "37%"} and the non-conversion rate which is broken down into active non- conversions (labeled as "non-conversion" with a value of "18%"} and non-response (labeled as "non-response" with a value of "45%"}.
00329 The report can allow the vendor to adjust the triggers and/or target profile appropriately for the next time will lead to much more effective marketing, and provide a better return on investment ("ROI"}, e.g. when the vendor is charged on a per-recipient basis for message sending. Further, the report provides a better overall understanding of the merchant's audience segment(s}. For example, they may find that customers are elicited by the "HALF OFF" message to travel up/down from other floors, whereas only the customers in very close proximity take advantage of the "FRESH OUT OF THE OVEN" message
Example 4 Reports
00330 A system of the present invention can optionally be provided with a reporting module (e.g. provided on the messaging server or a remote reporting server}. The system is used by one or more message senders (e.g. tenants of a collective] to send messages to targeted recipients. A module of the system tracks actions of message recipients (i.e.
mobile devices] and records the actions as data in a database. After a period of time, the message senders use the reporting module to create one or more reports. The message senders choose data types to correlate in a report. For example, the data types include one or more of: behavior data, message response data, location data, demographics data (i.e. demographics parameters], preferences data (i.e. preference parameters], or any targeting parameters of the mobile devices. As illustrative examples, one or more of the following report correlations reports are provided:
a. Response data and Location Data for one or more messages (e.g. as depicted in Figure 11, Figure 12, and Figure 13];
b. Response data and Time Data (e.g. as depicted in Figure 14];
c. Response data and Demographic Data (e.g. as depicted in Figure 15 and
Figure 16]; and
d. Response data and Behavior Data (e.g. as depicted in Figure 17].
00332 The present invention provides numerous optional features, each of which is useful alone or in concert to provide an embodiment of the present invention. Accordingly, for each optional feature taught herein, the invention provides an embodiment wherein the feature is combined with any other embodiment taught herein (e.g. in combination with embodiments claimed], except where said optional feature conflicts with the express teachings of the embodiment. 00333 The present invention provides numerous methods and systems. For each method taught herein, the invention provides an alternative embodiment comprising a system having modules configured for performing said method. Similarly, for each system taught herein, the invention provides an alternative embodiment comprising a method comprising the steps for which system is configured to perform.
00334 The citations provided herein are hereby incorporated by reference for the cited subject matter.
Priority Applications (4)
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|WO2014032039A1 true WO2014032039A1 (en)||2014-02-27|
Family Applications (1)
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Country Status (1)
|WO (1)||WO2014032039A1 (en)|
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