Reward scheme bridges real world/social media divide
Program designed to close the gap between a brand’s online social media presence and real-world physical presence.
Pelago has launched the ‘Whrrl Society Rewards’ social networking loyalty programme.
As part of the launch offer, customers who check in with mobile social media networking service Whrrl when arriving at one of scheme partner Murphy USA’s 1,100 gas stations will be accepted into the “Murphy USA Society” and earn a chance to immediately win US$50 worth of free fuel.
Whrrl was launched in October 2007 as a ‘geosocial’ networking and discovery site that enables both web and mobile users to find, explore, share, meet up at, and rate points-of-interest in their cities – similar to services such as loopt, buzzd and brightkite.
Whrrl is marketing the Society Rewards program to brands, saying that the loyalty scheme will reward users for motivating others to visit a business, and help those businesses close the gap between a brand’s online social media presence and their real-world physical presence.
It adds that the programme is different from traditional loyalty programs in four major ways:
• Whrrl Society Rewards is prize-based. Consumers have an opportunity to win prizes when they check in to participating retail locations and earn additional opportunities to win as they achieve higher levels in Societies – which happens as others act on their recommendations. Because the rewards are prizes of chance, the program can be started and stopped easily and quickly, without the long-term financial liabilities that come with traditional transaction-based loyalty programs.
• Whereas traditional programs, e.g. loyalty “punch cards,” are based solely on transactions, Whrrl’s Society Rewards is based on a person’s ability to inspire friends to try new ideas at real-world places. When a user recommends an idea, they earn points and can level up in a Society. Users receive additional points when others “Want To” try that idea, actually do try the idea or pass on the recommendation to their friends. Users also earn points by getting others to join the Society and by checking in at qualifying locations.
• Retailers and brands can have their own Societies on Whrrl. Societies are passion groups for the real-world, bringing people together to motivate each other to try new things in a vast array of topic areas, including live music, fashion, food, shopping, outdoor activities, “follow in the footsteps” groups and more. Retailers and brands can create their own Whrrl Societies and motivate their customers to join, activating them in the real-world.
• Whrrl Societies are viral. There are many opportunities for Society members to share out to their friends and followers on Facebook and Twitter, from check-ins and recommendations to prize win moments, which organically grows the Society.
Pelago says mainstream US users comprise a large part of the location-based service’s 300,000 customers and that its user base is less geek’-based than competitors such as loopt.
“Murphy USA is embracing social and local technology to re-invent what it means to be your gas station,” said John Kim, VP of product and marketing at Pelago. “Why does fueling up need to be a mundane activity when it can be opportunity for surprise, delight and fun? We are excited to be working with a brand that wants to add spice to your everyday activities.”