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How To Fulfill Targeted Offers To Hear More Ka-Chings

All of us receive spammy offers from banks, consumer brands, ecommerce websites, retailers and many other businesses. If you’re like me, you probably delete these SMS / email messages without even opening them.

Once in a while, we get a discount coupon on our birthday or wedding anniversary. They are more targeted but, since human beings are conditioned to receiving gifts – not discounts – on their Major Life Events, they meet the same fate as spam.

It’s rarely that we get an offer that makes total sense to us when we receive it e.g. 20% off on Coke just after buying a pizza; offer to restructure an atypically high value credit card purchase into six equated monthly installments, and so on.

The recent launch of Apple iBeacon has raised the potential of – and the buzz around – targeted offers to the next level and we should be hearing more about them going forward.

Now, cue to what happens when we decide to partake of a targeted offer.

You may go around in circles. Like I did on at least three occasions in the recent past:

  1. A taxi hailing app sent me a discount code that I wouldn’t be able to remember whenever I ordered its cab next. More on this at Walking The Tightrope Between Driving Repeat Purchase And Rewarding Loyalty (hyperlink to my company's blog removed) 
  2. One offer app installed on my smartphone correctly recognized my location (Kalyaninagar, Pune, India) and showed me a 30% discount offer for a burger from a nearby restaurant, with delivery charges waived for good measure. When I tapped on the REDEEM OFFER button, the app took me to the quick service restaurant’s website to place my order. However, the QSR thought I was located 2500 kms away (in Gurgaon, India, BTW) and politely declined home delivery since my address was outside its 3 kms delivery radius. To add salt to the wound, the QSR informed me that the offer had expired five months ago.
  3. Another offer app sent me two targeted offers in a certain mall. When I tapped the offer’s PUSH notification on my Android’s notification bar, the app generated *ALL* offers – around 50 – in the said mall and lost me to the resultant clutter (https://twitter.com/GTM360/status/469742219357077504).

Going by this datapoint of three, it's a pity that many companies pay scant regard to the critical step of fulfillment after having spent so much time and money on making offers. 

Barring a few exceptions, that is. Like Go Daddy.

The world’s #1 domain registrar recently sent me an email with an offer for 20% discount on my next order. Since I was in the market for a new domain name, the offer caught my eye immediately. My interest went up a notch when I noticed that the promo code given in the email was clickable (yes, I notice such things). Therefore, I went ahead and clicked the link. I was taken to Go Daddy’s website, where I logged in with my credentials.

Now, if you’ve shopped for domain names, you’d know that the purchase funnel comprises of several steps viz. (a) enter the domain name (e.g. VacationRentals.com) (b) check availability (c) select the term (e.g. 5 years) (d) enter nameserver details (e.g. NS194.HOSTGATOR.COM) (e) punch in your credit card details (f) add promo code, and, finally (g) click the BUY button.

Go Daddy didn’t ask for my promo code at any stage. Instead, the website applied it automatically to my checkout and assured me that it had given me the best price. I whipped out the calculator app on my smartphone (yes, I do that a lot, too) and satisfied myself that I’d received the promised 20% discount.

Behind the scenes, Go Daddy had remembered – or “persisted” in geekspeak – my promo code.

Now, persistence is not a big deal. Many websites do it. For example, I’d highlighted in If You Must Use A Long Form, At Least Pre-Fill As Much Of It As You Can (hyperlink to my company's blog removed) how the click of a certain Promoted Tweet on HootSuite took me to a microsite where the registration form was prefilled. However, in all examples of persistence I’ve come across barring Go Daddy, data is persisted only on the landing page immediately following the click.

In contrast, Go Daddy persisted the promo code three pages beyond the landing page. This is truly unique in my experience. 

Kudos to Go Daddy for going the extra mile to implement “multistage persistence”, which delivered one of the best fulfillment experiences of a targeted offer that I’ve come across. I’m sure the company is reaping a rich harvest by enjoying above-average redemption rates for its offers.

Ka-Ching!

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