Daily Deal sites, also known as Collective Buying sites are a recent phenomenon sweeping the nation for both consumers and business owners. It’s a coupon/discount site that offers exclusive deals if a certain demand is reached through the power of collective buying.
For consumers it’s an opportunity to try a new place or activity at an unbeatable price. For business owners, it’s an opportunity to showcase their food or services to a new audience and earn loyal customers. This sounds like a win-win situation! However I’ve been hearing many business owners complain about their brand being devalued and not gaining any repeat business when they participate in a Collective Buying campaign.
Before reading any further, keep in mind, Collective Buying, just like any other marketing method is not for everyone. It may not be the right strategy for your business so if that’s the case, there’s absolutely no reason to force a deal, then to be upset later that it didn’t work. If you do decide to embark on Collective Buying here are tips on how to successfully execute a campaign to gain new exposure, repeat customers and enhance the value of your brand.
1. Positive Attitude - Attitude is everything, especially when it comes to creating wealth in your business. Don’t create a self fulfilling prophecy with the mindset that Deal sites don’t work. I hear so many business owners complain about using these sites, then submit a deal anyway only to affirm their original believe that it doesn’t work. Just as you pay for any other marketing campaign and understand that the money is an investment, you are paying for your Collective Buying Campaign through products or services. Many business owners constantly complain “I am losing so much money”. Believing that the products you invest is “losing money” automatically puts a negative perspective in your mind about the entire process. Go into the campaign knowing that this is a positive marketing investment and stop thinking about how you are losing money. You are gaining customers. You are getting new exposure and you’re driving new traffic into your location.
2. Create an offer that Adds Value- You want customers to associate your deal as having high value rather than a cheap service. It is true that once some customers receive your service at a discounted rate, they’re less inclined to buy your product at a regular rate. There are many ways to word your “deal”. If 50%-60 off sounds absurd for what you’re offering, get creative. I recently bought a deal that was $20 for “Wine Tasting for Two and a Bottle of Wine”. You can create “Two for One” deals. Deals that charge a price and offer service such as “$25 for a 5 course Meal”, “$50 for a Massage and Manicure” sound more valuable than “50% off a 5 Course meal”. All of these examples offer a great deal but they’re also creating more value with your brand because they don’t mention anything about discounting a service.
3. Encourage Customers to Share – When offering a collective deal, this is the best opportunity to get your loyal customers to share your business with their friends or family. You’re allowing them to invite others to try something they love at a great price. Post the deal to your own networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Email list and blog. Allow people to buy multiple deals to give as gifts. Your best advocates are those who already love your product or service so make it easy for them to share your business with their friends
4. Prepare You Staff- Ensure you have extra staff on hand to handle the immediate increase in business as most people will redeem their deal immediately. In addition, ensure your entire staff is educated and aware of your deal. There is nothing more embarrassing for a customer when they come in to your establishment to redeem a deal you’ve offered then receive a blank stare from your employee who proceeds to say they have no idea what the customer is talking about. This is a sure way to guarantee your potential new customer won’t feel comfortable coming back. Make sure your staff is not only aware of the deal but completely understands all the fine print. This allows your staff to welcome and embrace the new customer. I’ve heard complaints of many places providing poor customer service to Deal users because they don’t think they’ll ever return. Your business should be doing the complete opposite, give the Deal user exceptional service and give them a reason to return.
5. A Reason to Return - Many people who use collective buying sites are looking for the best deal. After purchasing your deal they might move on to the next deal they find. When they’re in your establishment you have their full attention so this is your chance to get them to commit to coming back before they move on. For example, if you’re offering yoga classes and the customer purchased 1 month for $50, you can offer them that same rate or slightly higher if they sign up for 3 more months. If you’re offering spa service such as a 1 hour massage, you can offer your customer a massage package if they sign up immediately where they can sign up for 3 more massages at a discount. This is an opportunity for you to encourage your new customer to return before they even have a chance to move on to the next deal.
Have you purchased any daily deals? Please share your favorites, your experience with the establishment as a deal user and if you returned as a customer or not. If you don’t already have an account to check out daily deals, here are some popular sites you can sign up for to get the scoop on the best deals in your city:
I’m very excited to announce the exciting lineup of panelists joining me at the next Digital Media Dinners taking place Thursday February 24th, 5:30-8pm at Jasmine Seafood Restaurant. We have some amazing professionals from extremely well known social networks! The event topic is Social Media Branding. The audience will be educated on strategies to strengthen their brand across various social networks including review sites (Yelp, MojoPages), collective buying sites (Groupon, Location), location based sites (Foursquare, Gowalla), Facebook and Twitter.
Our panelists will answer all your tough questions and objections on specific networks. They will also provide their expertise on how to ensure your brand is received the optimal positive brand exposure online.
1. Danny Wurst- Community Manager, YELP: Danny Wurst is the Community Manager of San Diego Yelp and a lover of all foods. Originally a Chicago native, he has a B.A. in Media Studies and Public Relations from Loras College and if you know where that is he will buy you a beer. He came to San Diego 2 years ago by way of the hotel industry and has been yelping ever since, earning him the role of “mayor of Yelp” in town. If you ask him what his idea of a great night on the town would be he’ll tell you “the three B’s” — good Booze…good Burgers….good Buddies, not necessarily in that order.
2. Kate Grafton- Account Manager, Groupon San Diego: Kate Grafton is an Account Manager for Groupon. Originally from the midwest, she earned her B.A. in Business Administration/Accounting from Monmouth College. Her love of travel and dislike of bad weather brought her to San Diego 8 years ago where she started her career in sales, marketing and training for small business owners. She travelled across the country consulting small businesses before transitioning into advertising sales. She sees opportunities in the growing collective buying industry so decided to make Groupon her new professional home. She is currently helping San Diego businesses grow their customer base through Groupon features, traveling in her free time, and enjoying beautiful San Diego.
3. Lee Mills- VP of Marketing, MojoPages & Board Advisor, Deal Current: Lee Mills is a highly experienced sales & marketing professional dedicated to delivering a positive ROI. He is a recognized marketing industry expert who has case studies published, frequently speaks at industry conferences and was named a Rising Media Star by Media Magazine in 2004. His focus is on providing intelligent strategies, proven tactics and ROI. For the last several years Lee has been serving as the VP of Marketing for MojoPages.com. In his spare time he’s a sought after Consultant, a Board Advisor for Deal Current and an iMarketers Association Council Member.
At Digital Media Dinners you will learn:
• Hands-on, tactical tips to implement and incorporate immediately
• Knowledge on how to improve your brand image
• Tools to customize a compelling brand message to attract qualified customers
WHO SHOULD ATTEND:
* Business Owners and Business Leaders
* Marketing and PR Executives
* CMOs, Marketing Managers and Directors
* Product and Brand Managers
* Anyone interested in learning how Social Media will help grow your business
Reserve your spot today by registering HERE