Online coupon titans LivingSocial and Groupon have a new a rival, a Portland tech startup called Birthday Coups that boasts a distinctive feature setting it apart from its competitors.
Intrepid chief technology officers and business development associates will be intrigued by this new twist. The firm’s unique online platform was built by 27-year-old Web Developer Chuck Drew, who designed it to enable coupons to be sent to customers as their birthdays approach. It may be in the same business space as Groupon, but there all similarities end. Birthday Coups promises to overcome the shortcomings of the traditional online coupon model – a fleeting rush of bargain hunters followed by a rapid tail-off in custom – by attracting long-term, loyal shoppers.
Loyalty vs flash in the pan shopping
Businesses who sign up with Birthday Coups will receive an online dashboard that allows them to manage their customer birthday list and choose which coupon types to offer. Chief revenue officers and product managers might like to take note. Instead of a flash in the pan flurry of shopping, the startup’s technology will drive sales all the year round by automatically sending coupons to customers on day one of their birthday month.
Presently, businesses will need to track when customers redeem their coupons manually, but this will shortly be automated, offering enterprises intelligent feedback about which coupons are performing the best. The service is free for clients with fewer than 500 names on their mailing lists. A monthly fee of $29 is payable for mailing lists of between 501 and 2,500 names, rising to $129 a month for companies with lists above 2,500.
On the way up?
Although Birthday Coups has been in beta for the last six months, it already has a dozen clients on board, three of whom are fee paying. As an online venture, it’s not limited by geography. With no marketing, it’s attracted a spa in South Africa and restaurants in Texas, North Carolina and Chicago.
One of its clients, a local grocery called Rosemont Market and Bakery, says it was immediately attracted by the firm’s loyalty-building focus in preference to generating a transient spree of bargain seekers.
Co-founders Chuck Drew and Merritt Carey have bootstrapped the startup so far, but soon plan to begin looking for new investment to scale up the firm.