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Loyalty Platform Closes POS, Social Media Loop

A patent-pending technology from vendor Beanstalk Loyalty promises to create a loyalty platform that integrates POS data generated by a customer with their social media activities. The program enables a retailer (with customer permission granted during loyalty registration) to check in that customer to Facebook Places, to post on the customer's Facebook "wall" and—critically—to use POS information generated by the customer to create an individualized promotion for that customer in the future.

Facebook Places is one of a number of social media platforms that invite users to "check in" at specific locations (including particular retail locations) as a social interaction tool. To date, customers do check-ins at their discretion, and some retailers provide promotional incentives to encourage them to check in at their sites frequently.

However, those incentives tend to be generic because the check-in only tells a retailer that a particular customer was on the premises, but nothing about what, if anything, the individual purchased—either on that occasion or previously. However, by integrating POS data with the check-in action, the Beanstalk platform allows the retailer to create a specific, individualized promotional pitch using the customer's purchase history.

The pitch can then to transmitted in multiple ways—social media, text messages, email or even direct mail—depending on the customer's preference indicated at the time of the loyalty program registration. In addition, the platform offers retailers the capability of posting on a customer's Facebook "wall," potentially influencing other viewers of the page.

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