The Social Shopping Revolution Has Begun

by Jessica Murray on Jun 22, 2010
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Social Networking Syncs with Customer Purchases

Blippy enables opted in users to share their online and offline purchases with followers by syncing their e-commerce accounts like iTunes, Netflix, Zappos, as well as, with your debit and credit card accounts.

Mashable reported last month that Blippy’s user base has grown and “…users are sending data on $1.5 million worth of purchases each week.”

What does that mean for brands?

The value proposition for brands is the ability to view the patterns of spending behavior and customer brand loyalty. Users opting into a service like Blippy, gives brands an advantage to react on customers actively engaging with their brand and could be used well for customer recovery.

Proactive brands can also watch customers engagement with competition and quickly influence their purchase or at the very least, provide assistance about their products. If brands are able to see where customers are comfortable spending their money, they can react accordingly and appeal to the broad base of Blippy users by enticing us with deals.

Next step for brands

This community marketing approach via sharing your purchases with followers has gained traction with companies like TastiD-Lite which came out with their internal guest loyalty promotion through Foursquare in January. Customers that sign up for the Tasti TreatCard can sync their Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare accounts with their loyalty card and each dollar spent earns you one TastiD-Lite point which is automatically shared across your social networks.

The Tasti TreatCard allow customers to earn extra points the more social networks they sync their loyalty card with and helps Tasti further promote their brand. The best part about these points earns, you can cash it in for a frozen treat at any TastiD-Lite location so you actually earn something tangible out of the deal.

There’s a great opportunity for brands to pay attention to customers patterns and spending but believe the risk to customers far outweighs the benefits. Although Blippy is an opt in service, the purchases I make on my debit or credit card will always remain private especially after Blippy mistakenly published users credit card numbers a few months ago. Unless you’re prepared to share your vices with the world, be sure to select manual update when syncing your accounts.

ChompOn, We Reward and the Evolution of Sharing Purchases

I believe the novelty of Blippy has already passed and users are seeking direct benefits for sharing their purchases. Carrying a conversation around which Netflix movie I rented is not enough to satisfy me and why should it be? There are new services like ChompOn and We Reward, both of which officially launched at the TechCrunch Disrupt Conference in May.

ChompOn incorporates the social network sharing component of Blippy with the local daily group specials of Groupon.

We Reward is a mobile app that allows users to earn points for checking in local businesses and carrying out tasks to earn points. Each We Reward point earns you $.01 and when you refer friends, you earn 10% of their verified check in points, all of which can be deposited in your PayPal account.

We Reward already has Domino’s Pizza as a participating business and only charges advertisers based on customers how make actual purchases at their location.

Users spending time around a conversation is fun but at the end of the day, we all want to help our bottom line, whether it be as a business or individual. The sites that are offering users money or higher discounts because they’re promoting their purchases across their social networks will be the ones to prevail.

This new purchase sharing platform is an exciting space to watch in the coming years because I’m confident brands will have to get creative to remain competitive and keep the flow of conversation revolving around their brands.

Do you believe Blippy can remain competitive with sites such as ChompOn and We Reward offering deep discounts or giving money back to users?
Post Author

West Coast born and bred, East Coast educated and now Southern Fried. Jessica is the Co-Founder and Program Director of Social Media Club Nashville and heavily involved in the leadership of Nashville's PodCamp and BarCamp, annual events with more...