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GPS-to-POI – Digital Element launches the ‘first IP-to-Point of Interest’ database

IP-to-Point of Interest

Location data is most useful when it can tell advertisers the proximity of physical locations to potential customers.

To better accomplish that task, geo-location data provider Digital Element is out with its new NetAcuity Point of Interest (POI) database. The Atlanta-based company says this is the first such IP address-to-POI database.

POIs and IP addresses. It contains millions of physical locations in the US and Canada, EVP Rob Friedman and co-founder told me, pinpointed via longitude/latitude coordinates and obtained from various location data providers, such as Infogroup. The locations include restaurants, shopping centers, movie theaters, historical landmarks and so on.

IP addresses include static ones, such as those on fixed wireless or cellular data spots, as well as dynamic addresses that change quickly as signals are handed off between towers. Friedman said that Digital Element has years of experience with the location of these dynamic IP addresses so they can quickly be filtered out, because they can change before an ad is delivered.

Why this matters to marketers. In a typical use case for the new POI database, a restaurant chain may want to serve an ad to users near one of its many locations, when they visit a web site or app from a participating ad exchange.

Because Digital Element knows which IP addresses are near the chain’s locations, the brand can advertise only to those users whose phones are reaching the Net through those particular IP addresses. Brands can also target their competitors’ customers, such as Home Depot sending ads to users near Lowe’s stores.

While other location data providers offer GPS-to-POI data, Friedman claims this is the only one that connects IP addresses with physical locations. He noted that IP addresses are more reliable, since they don’t need to be turned on or granted access by the user, the way GPS does. Additionally, he said, the IP address offers a more granular targeting.