We know how much consumers love to find great deals and save at their favorite local hangouts. To help consumers easily discover, filter and search for the best deals closest to them, we launched Bing Offers across the US, which consolidated local deals from a large number of deal providers.
Since then, we have been actively speaking with merchants to learn about their Daily Local Deals experience. We found that there is some frustration with having to make major commitments to create coupon deals along with additional investment in infrastructure and training to manage redemptions. Merchants also wished they had more direct control on managing promotions with better insights into consumer engagement. To help minimize this frustration, we are excited to announce an update called “Bing Offers Card-Linked” in partnership with established leaders in transaction processing such as First Data, and with payment networks like MasterCard.
Card Linked offers help give merchants and advertisers the ability to deliver an “offer” or “deal” to consumers via their credit, debit or other payment card without the consumer having to use a paper coupon, voucher or promotion code on their mobile device. Bing Offers Card-Linked also gives advertisers:
- Broad reach: Card Linked offers will give merchants the ability to advertise across Microsoft’s online properties such as Outlook.com, Skype, Windows Phone 8 and Bing Apps that reach an audience of millions.
- Favorable economics: A CPA-model – gives advertisers much lower marketing fees.
- Better engagement: Advertisers can establish long-term consumer relationships and offer more relevant deals by understanding consumer interests.
- Controlled discounts: Ability to regulate promotions by limiting the risk of oversubscription of coupons or high consumer traffic within a narrow period.
- Frictionless redemption: At checkout, there is no need to change the point of sale (POS) system, no additional effort required to train staff in handling redemptions, and no need to wait for payments from deal promoters. Advertisers can use time and resources effectively to grow their business based on insightful Bing Offers reports.
“We view Bing Offers Card-Linked as a way to unlock tremendous value for merchants by simplifying the redemption process,” said Dom Morea, senior vice president, Advanced Solutions and Innovation, First Data. “Together we will help to revolutionize merchant marketing, advertising and offers.”
"Simply put, this is a win-win for consumers, merchants and financial institutions,” said Leigh Amaro, senior business leader of offer platforms, MasterCard. “MasterCard cardholders who sign up for Bing Offers will no longer need to clip coupons or remember promo codes when they use their card. Merchants will also benefit from greater engagement with their customers in a way that can -- and is proven to -- increase sales."
As of now, Bing Offers Card-Linked is in beta and available in Seattle, WA. We have already seen participation from dozens of businesses such as Pizza Hut, Mooyah Burgers, Buca Di Beppo and others and local SMBs across a variety of verticals (spas, automotive repair, espresso shops, restaurants and retail stores). Bing Offers Card-Linked availability in other US cities is expected to follow soon.
We wanted to make a difference by bridging the digital advertising world with the physical world in a way that minimizes friction for merchants and consumers to engage with each other in valuable ways. Furthering our commitment in this space, we also just announced today the CardLinx Association to establish increased interoperability and promote the growth of the card linked offers industry.
Stay tuned for more updates later this year.
Erik Jorgensen, GM Local Advertising for Microsoft.