Saturday, January 17, 2009

Perk Management 2.0

Link of the day - The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less

Loyalty programs have been around for years—as evidenced by the mass of cards weighing down many consumers' wallets—but the difficulty of keeping track of them all can mean that consumers often don't reap the rewards they're entitled to. Enter Perkler, an Australian site that just entered beta for the sole purpose of helping consumers get what they deserve.

Perkler is an online community "for perks and people who love them," giving shoppers a central place online to manage all of their loyalty and rewards programs. Users begin by registering and setting up a virtual wallet to track all their cards. With a database of more than 500 programs and 150,000 rewards, Perkler brings the information about all of those cards together so shoppers can search all of them at once, even linking to specific retail locations so they know where to get each perk they're interested in. Community features let people share their thoughts and rate programs, making it easier also for users to find new programs they'd like to join. The site is free for consumers; rather, its business model depends on partnering with the owners of loyalty programs, offering aggregated data on customer behaviour, better targeting, a platform for advertising, and more touch-points for consumer interaction. Perkler plans to launch in the US and UK in early 2009; iPhone and Blackberry applications currently in development, meanwhile, will give users the ability to search for perks by geographic location.

This is the era of perkonomics, as our sister site would say. Consumers appreciate more than ever the convenience, status and plain old savings loyalty perks can afford, while brands get a way to differentiate themselves and show empathy during tough economic times. Facilitate the benefits on both sides, and you turn a win-win into a win-win-win!

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