Because of the recession, the average consumer has become increasingly pocket conscious. Since 2008, couponing has seen a 27 percent increase, and with the proliferation of social channels, many brands are beginning to transition their offers from print to digital. While coupons were once pieces of paper clipped from inserts in the weekend paper, connected consumers can print offers online and access coupons on their smartphones, erasing scissors from the equation and putting social media at the center instead.For most brands, digital coupons clear a path for increased customer insight. Companies can track which offers have been printed and who has redeemed these coupons in an effort to develop an all-encompassing view of their customers and their response to given offers. Brands have also started integrating social media so customers may reap the benefits as they share their find with friends, thus potentially drawing more prospects to the brand at hand.
For instance, RedPlum's Social Savings application puts coupons in the hands of Facebook users without making them ever leave Facebook. Customers can essentially save and socialize at the same time. Coupons can be shared, printed, or downloaded to a grocery loyalty card. Right On Interactive, however, uses foursquare integration to create, manage, and track multichannel campaigns, while their lifecycle marketing solution allows marketers to achieve a singular view of their prospects. Together, these tools can target customers based on their location in order to provide personalized, engaging offers.
However, as Jim Parkinson, chief digital officer at Valassis highlights, companies must really get to know their clients in order to provide the most effective messaging, whether it's through traditional print methods, or more modern approaches, such as location-based mobile promotions and targeted display advertisements. According to Jonathan Trieber, co-founder and CEO of RevTrax, 90 percent of retail sale still take place offline, confirming that it's wise for companies to blend their digital efforts with their brick and mortar roots. Because in a world where channel consistency may be difficult to unlock, knowing what's best for your customers could be the key to continued success.