Groupon Now: Future of Mobile Marketing for Small Business

Tue Mar 22, 2011 3:41pm EDT

by Priti Ambani

Groupon is about to unveil its innovative mobile app tool that it hopes is going to change the way we will eat, shop and play. Groupon Now, set to release next month will add to the daily Groupon deals by offering time and location specific deals. Per Mashable-

When a user opens up the smartphone app, he or she will be presented with just two buttons: "I'm hungry" and "I'm bored."

Either choice will then present a wide range of choices depending on the time and location of the mobile user! This tool has potential to better business for many, especially small and medium enterprises that see varying traffic at different times in a day or week. Groupon Now may prove to be an excellent way to match demand to supply, benefitting both the consumer and the business. By offering deals during slow business at specific locations, businesses can increase profitability, manage resources and reduce wastage. Its also a win-win for the hungry or bored consumer as they get a deal when and where they want it.

The current Groupon 1.0, as its called, is more of an "have coupon will use" model, where consumers find a business or deal they like and purchase the discount to use "later". With this concept, merchants had no control of incoming business and customers went to a restaurant just because they had a coupon. Businesses would switch between being extremely busy on weekends to being super slow mid-week. Groupon Now, on the other hand is is living in the moment where offers are current and available immediately to the consumer, based on their location. Businesses can now choose when they want these deals to be available, helping to manage inventory and keep profits up. Take an example of a major convention or conference happening in an area- merchants can now time their offers at locations that can earn them the most buck. Possibilities with this kind of marketing are endless and operators can make the most out of these by careful planning, stocking and management.

Groupon founder and CEO Andrew Mason told Bloomberg Businessweek in an extensive interview on the new product-

"For merchants, the daily deal is like teeth whitening, and Groupon Now is like brushing your teeth. It can be an everyday thing to keep your business going,"

With other coupon sites like Living Social right up there with Groupon, the future of mobile-marketing for small and medium businesses is about to undergo a sea change.

Reprinted with permission from Ecopreneurist

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