Daily deals are the latest trend in internet marketing. You’ve probably heard of them, and may be on a couple of lists yourself. I receive daily emails from Groupon, Living Social, and BtoB City, a new daily deal site for businesses. I saw a terrific example last weekend of how one business is on track to make the most of their Groupon marketing.
You may have guessed from the incredible deals that these are usually loss-leaders for businesses. The business offers its product or service for a loss to get you in the door. The business often takes even more of a loss than you may think – the product or service will be offered around 50% off the normal price. In addition to that, the business pays the list operator (Groupon, Living Social, etc.), about half of what they take in, so they’re really looking at getting only 25% of the normal rate. On the other hand, there’s usually no up-front fee, so you look at it as your marketing budget. That’s what you pay to get someone in the door. But the key is to keep them coming back.
On Saturday, our local Groupon deal was for Tricks Gymnastics. They have dance and gymnastics classes for kids. While the dance classes are mostly filled with girls and my boys don’t like anything they consider, “girly,” they still love to bounce on trampolines, dive into the foam pit and climb the ropes. We were actually going to a birthday party there that same afternoon for one of my six year-old’s best friends. I was ready to buy the deal right away for my son – four weeks of gymnastics classes for only $25! I went over to their website to make sure one of the classes would be a good fit for him. Here’s what I saw:
Look at that! They had a message right there, on the home page, just for me, a Groupon customer. It showed me they cared, they were ready to provide me awesome service, and they knew just what questions I might have. I was impressed. I clicked through, read the class descriptions, then went back to purchase my Groupon. When we went to the birthday party that afternoon, we stayed after to see the class schedule and to decide when we’d start. The staff person was super helpful and even checked the ages of the other boys enrolled to help my older son decide if he’d like to join in.
As great as they’ve been so far, this is still part of the first step – getting us in the door. My thought when I purchased one month of classes was that this would be something fun for my son to do over the summer. We’re not really planning to keep going after that. Their job is to convince us otherwise. That’s what will make it worth it for them – a new customer paying their regular monthly rates ($72/month for the classes my son will be taking).
What’s the next step? How can they convince us to enroll long-term? For starters, they need to provide an awesome program that my son loves and begs to go back to. They need to make me feel like he’s getting something valuable out of it. Maybe they’ll even come up with a follow-up offer, like a lesser discount if we commit to three months. From what I’ve seen so far, I think they’ve got it all planned out. I think they went into this with a strategy, and you should too.
Have you ever tried offering a coupon through Groupon, Living Social, or another daily deal site? How did it work out for you? Do you have any creative ideas on how to get the most out of daily deal marketing?
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