Coupons often play an integral role in marketing strategy. They provide consumers with an incentive to purchase a product or service and open up additional revenue streams for businesses. However, the act of finding relevant coupons and cutting them out inhibits many consumers from taking advantage of the discounts.
Shooger aims to change all that. Available as an application for iPhones, Blackberrys or Androids, Shooger allows users to access deals by location, category or search. Consumers can then redeem the coupon in-store via their smartphone, share with friends on Facebook and Twitter, or clip, print and cut out for later use. In exchange, merchants can interact with highly engaged customers in a quick and cost-effective manner.
Although I believe Shooger will be successful, there are a few obstacles it must first overcome. As a young application and service (it was first introduced in 2009), Shooger does not offer many discounts. While using Shooger, I was able to find only one merchant (Buck’s Pizza) offering coupons in Madison. In addition, many deals do not offer enough of a discount to encourage use. In order to become successful, Shooger must incorporate more businesses with better deals.
However, although I foresee this application becoming successful, I do not believe it will reach critical mass. Shooger simply does not exhibit the characteristics or uses of other critical mass technology like Facebook and Twitter. Whereas Facebook and Twitter allow people to interact with family and friends, customize their online experience and have fun, Shooger merely offers people discounts. While everybody loves saving money, Shooger will not change people’s lives as significantly as other critical mass technologies that enhance information, engagement and interaction.