Coupons Drive Mobile Holiday Shopping, SessionM Says

achievement-screenSessionM provides a mobile advertising and loyalty platform designed to increase retention and usage of mobile apps and content via social media features including content sharing, linking to Facebook, Twitter check-ins, and social polls.

This week, SessionM released the results of a survey of 5,000 consumers registered for its mPOINTS program, which rewards them for using apps. It found increased intention to use the mobile channel for holiday shopping, and strong interest in coupons.

Not surprisingly, SessionM found that the majority of its users planned to use their mobile phones to research or purchase holiday gifts.

The survey found that 80 percent of mPOINTS users would use their phones to research or buy holiday gifts, with three out of four saying they would use them more than last year. Forty-two percent planned to use mobile coupons and rewards for their holiday giving, and 60 percent said that having a mobile coupon or reward would make them more likely to purchase a gift using their phones.

This was the first year SessionM did this survey, so comparable stats for last year are not available.

Certainly, this group has a higher propensity to use mobile for shopping and everything else. Said SessionM CEO Lars Albright, “We’re reaching the hand-raisers, the super-audience, people who like to engage in content. We found that this group has a high likelihood of seeing the phone as an important part of the shopping experience this holiday season.”

Simplicity seemed to be at least in part at play in mobile gifting, with 84 percent of survey respondents considering redeeming their mPOINTS for gifts, especially electronic gift cards.

reward-storeIn the mPOINTS loyalty program, users get rewarded for doing different activities within an app. For example, they can accrue 50 points for opening an app three times in a day, 25 points for watching a video, or 50 points for sharing the app within their social networks. They can redeem the points for gift cards and other offers or donate points to charity.

SessionM ads let users accrue additional points in a branded mobile environment. In a promotion for Adidas, for example, after users reached a points milestone through checking in, tweeting, etc., they saw a message inviting them to play an Adidas-branded game for more points. Finishing the game, they could go to the reward store and collect rewards from Adidas or other merchants.

Advertisers pay SessionM on a cost-per-engagement basis. SessionM and its publishers subsidize the rewards. The company says that SessionM users complete two times more sessions per month than the average user.

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