August 1, 2011

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Let’s Make a Deal

Is Group Couponing Losing its Savor?

Tom Haraldsen

August 1, 2011

Sustaining the Strategy
One unique approach to the concept is offered by Daily Skweez—which uses a text messaging platform to its customers for “this day only” offers. Six days a week, usually by 9 a.m. each morning, Daily Skweez sends offers to its database of more than 22,000 customers in three markets: Salt Lake City, Provo and Boise, Idaho.

“The offers are good just for that day,” says co-founder Abe Carter. “Customers can redeem the offers by showing the vendors the message on their cell phones. It’s what makes us different. No upfront purchase is necessary, no coupons to clip and no effort on the behalf of the consumer other than to look at their text messages.”

Carter says 95 percent of the retailers he promotes are restaurants. The company is just beginning to branch out into other types of businesses as its customer base grows.

“From the beginning, we operated on the premise that customers ask themselves two questions: ‘Where are we going to eat?’ and ‘What do we want to do tonight?’ That’s how we started in the direction of Daily Skweez.”

What does Brinton see as the future for these coupon programs?

“Retailers have to be strategic about it, because there’s no question that the initial blast is going to bring in a lot of customers,” she says. “It’s great to launch, but it’s not one that necessarily builds a sustainable business. So the challenge is how to take advantage of the concept without going out of business.”

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