In-Store Proximity Marketing: Experimenting with Digital Point-of-Sales Communication

Research output: Contribution to journalSpecial issue

26 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The authors present an exploratory study on the effectiveness of in-store marketing communication appeals via digital signage applying the construal level theory (CLT) in a field experiment. According to this theory, the authors hypothesize that shoppers will on the one hand respond more favorably to messages focusing on the desirability of the offering, when they are further distanced from the actual purchase decision. On the other hand, the authors expect more favorable responses toward messages containing feasibility appeals, positioned closer by to the purchase decision. The purpose of this paper is to determine appropriate location-based content for in-store proximity marketing. Design/methodology/approach: A field experiment was conducted in a Belgian coffee bar, examining temporal distance effects in a natural retail/service environment. A 2×2 between-subjects experimental design is implemented (i.e. low vs high temporal distance×concrete/cost vs abstract/brand-oriented appeal), examining the impact on marketing communication effectiveness. Findings: Overall, the authors find some initial support for CLT on effectiveness measures regarding purchase intentions and actual purchase, but not in terms of self-reported noticing of the screen and the ad, nor in terms of (un)aided ad recall. Research limitations/implications: This experiment is a pilot study and such finds itself confronted with a limited number of observations. Originality/value: The study is among the first to examine how message content (beyond price promotion) can be adapted to in-store locations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)910-927
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal of Retail & Distribution Management
Issue number7-8
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017


  • Digital signage
  • Experiment
  • In-store proximity marketing
  • Narrowcasting
  • Temporal construal level theory


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