Saturday, April 23, 2011

Start-Up Watch COD: Clovr Media connects the digital promos shoppers see with their credit and debit cards

Over the past couple of years, a number of companies have been working on a way to definitively tie online advertising to offline sales. Nielsen and IRI are partnered with a variety of ad networks to use their scanner panels as a way of demonstrating estimated volume impact of banner ads. Solutions like GSN deliver marketing messages to consumers at what they call the Moment of Decision – when consumers are planning their shopping trips on grocery chain websites.

A start-up called Clovr Media is taking a different approach by directly connecting banner, video, text, and mobile ads to the user’s credit or debit card. It’s what they call a CLO, a card linked offer.

It works like this:

•You see a Clovr enabled ad online.
•You click the ad to grab the offer
•The offer is then tied to the credit or debit card associated with the account
•When the user makes the purchase and uses the associated card, they get the savings automatically.
•The savings appear on their credit card statement, after purchase

Here’s the how it works vid:

Retailers benefit by reducing handling costs for ROP or online printable coupons, while reaping the benefits of increased sales driven by the offer. Because Clovr requires no interaction at the POS, it requires little or no effort from retailers to participate.

Consumers get an easier way to accrue savings on their everyday purchases. The offering seems “greener” as well, and eliminates the possibility of forgetting your coupons at home and whatnot. Additionally, the Clovr ads are targeted to opted-in users via data on their past purchases, which increases the relevance of the ads and offers they see.

Brands get to foster broad scale adoption of their offers; the ease with which savings are associated with a card means that more people are likely to participate than would clip coupons. Further, the challenge of traditional and tradigital coupons is that they are very likely to reach a deal prone consumer that won’t grow into a loyal user over time. Their affinity is to saving, not a brand.

On a more strategic level, the brand is getting full accountability for the sales impact of its banner marketing efforts. Since many of the existing methods for linking online advertising with online sales are limited to certain sites and networks, the more comprehensive footprint of Clovr may prove compelling.

The biggest winner, though, may be the bank issuing the card you associate with your account. Not only would members be more likely to charge their groceries, they would also be more likely to always use the card associated with their account. Banks call this being “top-of-wallet”, and it is one of the juiciest and most challenging goals of that business.

At any rate, there are some clear benefits to this service, and I think it makes a great deal of sense to keep your eye out from them as they grow in size and partnerships.

Thanks to ad:tech for publishing this first.

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