Facebook Participatory Promotions

Facebook-Walmart.PNG
In my previous post I discussed Walmart's Crowd Savers program on Facebook. Its an interesting way to push promotions to customers and also let them "play along." Wall posts invite fans to vote on the promotion, and when enough "likes" are recorded the promotion takes effect on the walmart.com site. They then let everyone know about the success of the promotion in another wall posting, and everyone (not just those that voted) can benefit.

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Yesterday there were two other examples of what I'm calling Facebook Participatory Promotions. Lowes has a Black Friday campaign they are running on Facebook in which they offer a limited number of items at a ridiculously low price for their fans. Most items are in the range of 90% off, and are limited to the first 100 people to checkout with the item at lowes.com. Of course these deals are only visible to fans of Lowes, and once you're a fan they can post other marketing messages on your newsfeed. These types of campaigns are sure to increase their number of fans and generate some excitement heading into the holidays. It remains to be seen if those fans will stick with Lowes after the holidays.


Facebook-Gap.PNG
Another example is The Gap. They recently offered free jeans to the first 10,000 customers that use Facebook check-in at one of their stores on November 5th. This should significantly increase foot-traffic tomorrow across The Gap chain.

These retailers are taking their Facebook promotions up a notch by adding an element of fun. Targeting promotions only to fans reinforces loyalty, and having them do things rather than just sending coupons adds the excitement and buzz. I predict these types of promotions get even more creative as we near the holiday season.

Comments:

Update: I'm the social media manager at Lowe's who pulled together the Black Friday promotion. You mention above that it remains to be seen if the fans we gained through the promotion would stick with us. We weren't sure, either. While we did lose 3,000 fans in one day, we gained 26,000 that same day. We also gained 56,000 in one day. In all, we grew our fan base about 300% through the promotions, and now have 520,000+ fans, or about twice what our nearest competitor has. We elected to spend money on putting our products in customers' hands, rather than on advertising or Facebook development. The biggest payoff for that was new fans, and positive sentiment. Hundreds of fans posted photos of themselves with their discounted products, often in front of one of our stores. -- Jeff Elder

Posted by Jeff Elder on April 02, 2011 at 05:21 AM CDT #

Thanks for the update, Jeff!

Posted by David Dorf on April 02, 2011 at 01:41 PM CDT #

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David Dorf, Sr Director Technology Strategy for Oracle Retail, shares news and ideas about the retail industry with a focus on innovation and emerging technologies.


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