By  on February 25, 2014

Already playing an integral role in simplifying services like hailing a ride to the airport, the smartphone also can help drive traffic to stores and sell merchandise.

Keith Duncan, the Austin, Tex.-based vice president of discount coupon marketplace Retailmenot Inc., explained the various ways that stores have turned to smartphones as marketing tools. For instance, Banana Republic offered a 10 percent discount via customers’ mobile phones if they came to a store, while Toys ‘R’ Us sent an ad to users who checked into a shop via Foursquare. More marketers can capitalize on consumers’ nomophobia, or the physical anxiety caused by not being near their phones or by waning battery power.

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