Archive for May, 2011

Think Outside the Box with Groupon, LivingSocial, etc

May 5, 2011 1 comment

Creative promotions with Groupon

In my last post, I mentioned that merchants are encouraged to give 50% to 90% discount on deals and promotion to customers, AND share approximately 50% of generated revenue with Collective Buying Social Platforms (eg: Groupon and LivingSocial) – It sounds like a blood sucker promo! However, they are still effective channels for brand exposure and new customer acquisitions, at a much cheaper rate compared to TV, Radio, and some online advertising channel.

Now the question is, are merchants thinking about Life-Time Value of these new customers? Are they coming back to pay full price for the same or upgraded service? How often do they come back? How about their friends and family?

Below are some thinking process before jumping on the bandwagon:

Step 1 – What are the objectives of being featured on Groupon, LivingSocial, Twongo and Google Offers?
a) Brand Exposure
b) Store or Site Traffics
c) New Customers Acquisitions/ Increase membership subscriptions
d) Increase revenue/ Increase market share

Step 2 – How to meet your objectives?
It takes creative brainstormings to figure out ways to meet your objectives. They are usually call-to-actions and should be rewarded with incentives that seems valuable to your target audience . You can give them a small gift or free desert, or small discount if they act on it. Below are just a few examples of call-to-action:
a) LIKE your Facebook Page, CHECK-IN to Facebook or FourSquare, Write a review on Yelp, or FOLLOW you on Twitter. You can engage them and have them spread the word for long term business relationship.
b) Leave an Email Address and Contact Info. You can email them new promo and product releases to keep them updated with your business activities.
c) Send an SMS to designated number with their name and email address
d) Take a picture at your store and share with friends on Facebook. Think outside of the box by engaging them and make their visit memorable in a good way.
d) Get them to your website, and follow with re-Marketing Campaigns. Setup a re-marketing campaign in Google Adwords to target website visitors who have been to your website but never converted. These re-marketing ads will follow them throughout Google Display Network. Email me if you want to know more about it.

Facebook Places, FourSquare, Twitter, Yelp, Email, SMS

Step 3 – How to report and track?
We are getting more advance here. Getting new customers through Groupon and Livingsocial is one thing, keep them coming back is another. How about getting to know them better and make them come back more often, and make sure they leave your store with a big smile? Depends on your business types, there are numerous tools out there that help businesses store customer information and track their buying behavior anonymously. Integrating tools below allows business owners to get 360 view on their business, for both online and offline transactions:
a) Web Analytics: Track Website visitor or/and returning customer’s behaviors (eg: Google Analytics, Yahoo Analytics, Coremetrics, Adobe/Omniture, etc)
b) CRM: Customer Relationship Management tool (eg: Silverpop, Sugar CRM, SalesForce, etc)
c) Phone System: If you take order over the phone, you might want to consider using phone system to track calls from returning customers and get better insights on how to better service them.
d) POS: Merchants who offer members reward cards are able to track the type of products and services bought by each customer.

All Transactions from Customer

Step 4 – What’s in for long term?
a) Analyze your customer database. Slice and dice your customer database from multiple perspectives, look at different metrics, such as order value, return frequency, type of products and services, etc.
b) Segment your customers. Find out your Top 1% and 10% of your customers by Life-time Order Value, Recency and Latency,
c) Run multiple Offers. Based on your customer segment, run different promotions and offers against them. For example, provide great offer for customer who hasn’t been back for more than a week; offer high purchase frequency customer with “refer-a-friend” reward, etc.
d) Keep up with the revolutions. Stay on top of the game, understand your customer’s need, and don’t be afraid to change. To stay competitive, you can perform analysis on your business using SWOT Analysis and Porter’s Five Forces.

If you have better idea or proven track record of success getting the most out of your promo with collective buying platforms, feel free to write to me. 🙂


Thanks Groupon, LivingSocial, Twongo and ….Google!

May 1, 2011 1 comment


Many businesses are jumping on the bandwagon – getting featured on Groupon, LivingSocial, Twongo, and now the new comer Google. Businesses that had been featured on Groupon and Livingsocial now have the alternatives on other collective buying websites like Twongo, Google and Tuanhu. Who have been the winner of this game? Obviously the consumers!

Businesses start competing with each others to get their brand  exposure through significantly reduced offers (50-90% off) plus sharing up to 50% of revenue with these companies. Yes! It sounds like a promotion that costs business owners arms and legs. However, if you (the business owner) know how to get the most out of your promo on these collective buying social platforms, you can enjoy your offer as much as your referred customers.

Stay tuned for my next post on Think Outside of the Box with Grupon & LivingSocial…

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