He emailed me to let me know about a service his company provides that allows websites, particularly internet retailers, to customise their website content based on predicted weather in the user’s local area.
So for example, if it’s going to be a sunny weekend ahead then the site could push outdoor furniture or barbeques. Essentially the digital equivalent of remerchandising your prime retail display areas based on the weather – a common practice in retail (how many times did I move that umbrella display unit in my store placement at Boots?).
Andrew emails that his site traffic, not surprisingly, is affected by the weather:
Snow, heat and thunderstorms all affect our traffic, whilst “traditional weather” like sunshine and 22c and light rain have little effect.
Interesting stuff. I wonder how the public relations profession could use weather data?
How about trying to match the content and angle of your news releases to the forecast weather for your targetted publication date?
It could increase relevance and cut-through for your message if the forecast is right, but do exactly the opposite if it’s wrong.
It’d be interesting to know some more about Andrew’s corporate clients, particularly any particularly innovative marketing or PR uses of meteological data.