Welcome to Facebook Deals, Your Next Generation Loyalty Card

05 Nov
November 5, 2010

via Nick J Webb (Flickr)

A few months back, Facebook launched Facebook Places. We talked all about how Places works, what Places means for the location based services industry, and how it benefits marketers and businesses here.

This week, Facebook launched Deals to allow businesses to reward customers for “checking in” to their establishments, further positioning Facebook as a leader in the LBS and social buying industries.

Facts

  • Before creating a Deal, you must first claim the Facebook Place
  • Once the Place has been claimed, you should notice a “Create Deal” link if you are part of the limited beta
  • Agencies who are admins of client Pages are able to create deals on behalf of clients
  • Deals is in beta and is only available to a limited set of claimed Places in the US. 20,000 small- to medium-sized businesses can start creating Deals now
  • Facebook hopes to offer the product more widely in the future
  • Facebook hopes to provide a tool to help create and manage multiple Places Pages and Deal propagation
  • Facebook offers four types of deals: Individual, Friend, Loyalty and Charity
  • Deals are available on touch.facebook.com or the latest version of Facebook for iPhone. Nearby Places with Deals have a yellow (Individual, Friend, Loyalty) or green (Charity) icon next to their listing
  • Facebook has partnered with 22 big brands to launch Deals, including Gap, McDonald’s, Starbucks and H&M. See a full list of what these brands are offering through Deals here


Examples of Facebook Deals

The Value of Facebook Deals: Loyalty, Awareness & Foot Traffic

Loyalty

The four types of deals that Facebook offers (Individual, Friend, Loyalty and Charity) not only gives brands flexibility in what to offer their customers, but it gives customers the flexibility to associate with brands that offer what they care about most. For some, individual rewards are more important than group rewards. For others, a brand’s association with a specific charity can significantly impact whether they go to Starbucks or Peet’s.  In my opinion, these types of deals are far more meaningful than a mayorship, badge, or pin. Facebook Deals offers greater instant satisfaction with clearer instructions on what needs to be done to get a reward, which will ultimately drive greater loyalty.

Awareness

Each time a user checks in to a Place on Facebook, that story is published to that user’s friends’ News Feeds.  There are now 200 million users who access Facebook via a mobile phone, and each user has an average of 130 friends. Because you can tag friends with you when you check into a Place and get rewarded for checking in with friends, Facebook users will start bringing their friends with them. When one user tags multiple friends at that Place, a single check in is seen by an even larger social graph. That’s a lot of potential exposure that other location based services do not come close to matching.

Increased Foot Traffic

Checking in on Facebook gives social context to a purchase decisions and experiences away from home.  As more Facebook users become aware of new Places and special offers through the people they know and care about, they have a greater chance of becoming influenced by that behavior simply because check in experiences are shared in an organic and authentic way that other forms of advertising can’t replicate.

What are your thoughts? How will this change how you use other social discount sites like Groupon or LivingSocial? How about Foursquare or Gowalla? Do share – we’d love to discuss with you in the comments.

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