“Wow! …50% off! ….Free! …Everybody, quick, buy it!”
Groupon inspired platforms use deals to create awareness, making the first point of interest for most people the discount. Consumers are being trained to purchase deals instead of products or services.
Now is the time when you can say, “that’s not true.” It works by bringing people back to the store – and I’ve already stopped listening. I am aware that the restaurant around the corner has great deals on pizza, but I am still happy to drive five miles and pay full price for a slice of pizza as long as they remember my name and hand me my Diet Coke to go with it…without even asking.
That’s where I see the Groupon model failing – it does not provide the support necessary to take the deal traffic and convert them into return customers. Deals can be used effectively as a strategic tactic within a larger campaign.
Long-term, services that discount products from local merchants will put local merchants out of business by creating non-loyalty based buying behaviors. If you train people to buy when deals are presented, you train them away from the buying behaviors that have sustained local businesses for generations.
Josh Jordan is the president and founder of Make Me Social, a marketing agency that combines traditional and new strategies to enhance an organization’s online presence and importance. Having held leadership positions with several Fortune 500 firms in industries including marketing, advertising, technology and media, Josh has developed new tactics and processes for improving outreach, sharing information and demonstrating subject matter expertise. As a difference-maker in a constantly evolving industry, he has combined the components of his background to create a communications philosophy that can assist non-profit and for-profit clients develop campaigns that deliver measurable results.