Placed announces Placed Affiliate, a new way for app developers to monetize their apps

Mobile app location analytics provider Placed today announced Placed Affiliate, a new way for app developers to monetize their app by providing location data to Placed for market research purposes.

“It’s a new monetization channel for app developers,” says David Shim, founder and CEO of Placed. “No one is doing this today.”

Essentially, mobile app developers get paid by Placed for allowing the company to gather location data from its users who opted-in on Placed collecting such data for its own market research. On top of Placed Affiliate, the Seattle-headquartered company currently offers a free service providing location-based data for mobile app developers called Placed Analytics. Placed also offers a product dubbed Placed Panels, which is a free stand-alone mobile app and survey tool for iOS and Android — called the Panel App in the app stores — that allows businesses to track and measure location-based data from opted-in users, who are rewarded with gift cards or entries into a prize drawing for completing surveys from businesses.

“Placed Affiliate is going to let us acquire and measure more data across a larger universe of devices,” Shim told Inside Mobile Apps.

After a mobile app developer signs up for the Placed Affiliate service, they are provided with the Affiliate SDK for integration into their app. Placed wants to make sure it covers all its bases when it comes to a user’s privacy. If a mobile app developer wants to use Placed Affiliate, they must first make sure a user enables location permissions, and second, when a user opens the app, a prompt will inform the user that the app works with Placed for market research on location data. A user can simply select “yes” or “no” if he or she wants or doesn’t want to send location data to Placed. Shim emphasizes that Placed is collecting only location data and nothing else.

“We’re going above and beyond what the legislation has been talking about,” he says.

App developers receive money if Placed can gather location data from users in a 7 day or 30 day period. Shim adds that Placed Affiliate provides incremental monetization. If an app already has monetization hooks through ads, in-app purchases, subscriptions or other means, he recommends app developers keep those and add Placed Affiliate on top of those monetization strategies.

Placed, which already launched a pilot for Placed Affiliate last month, is now allowing any mobile app developer to sign up for the service here.

Back in March 2012, Placed received $3.4 million in Series A funding from the Madrona Venture Group.

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