A new Des Moines based startup called FreebeeCards is preparing for launch. They are launching May 15th in Des Moines and they are currently signing up merchants and users, for what promises to be a fun and exciting new way to build customer loyalty and engagement.
Freebee Cards was founded by CEO Ken Lazzaro who is a consultant in the reward/loyalty card and credit card processing space so he has experience with this kind of thing. How did he come up with Freebee Cards? Their marketing guy Todd Razor told us in an interview:
“Ken’s consulting company, which educates and helps business owners implement gift card, loyalty and credit card processing programs, was working with the owner of a women’s clothing boutique in Austin, Texas. Ken had just sold the business owner a point-of-sale system, and she was also very interested in increasing customer loyalty. Ken’s company approached her about offering preloaded gift cards with varying values of $5, $10, $25 and $50 to customers in her area.
She loved the idea of consumers having to visit her store to find out the value of the cards. Yet a concern over not being able to measure the customer acquisition cost stopped her short of running that program.
Ken soon realized that developing an electronic version of this gift card marketing concept would allow merchants to track customer shopping habits, as well as open a direct line of communication to make special offers, reward customer loyalty and collect candid feedback outside of the public’s view.
It snowballed into an idea for a website and FreebeeCards was born.”
More after the break
Their promotional video (below) shows how with Freebee Cards a business can reward you with a secret reward card. You know you’ve got a gift card but you have no idea how much is there. In order to find out what your cool new gift card is worth you need to go into the business to redeem it, forcing entry by repeat customers. The average retailers card can be anything from $1 to $20 and we’ve been assured that the amounts are varied so it’s not like every free card is worth $1. In some cases Freebee Cards users will be able to go into their favorite nail salon or coffee shop and get their entire purchase free.
Freebee Cards isn’t just for coffee shops, sandwich shops and cafe’s either. Razor tells us that car dealerships can get in the program and give away cards ranging from $500-$1000, again all you have to do to redeem your Freebee Card is walk into the store and find out the value. We confirmed with Razor that you don’t even need to spend the Freebee Card when you find out the cards value.
You can only maintain 6 cards in your Freebee Card wallet but you can save up that card for a rainy day or gift or trade it to someone in the network. This creates a great social value. Say you and your buddies at work are all Freebee Card members and you get a $10 card at the driving range but don’t play golf. Well if your co-worker has a $10 card for the local gym you can swap cards on the network. This keeps everybody using the service and users talking to each other.
Freebee Cards is launching in the 515 on May 15th (you see what they did there right?). Razor has said that they have about 50 merchants signing up and more on the way. They’re really getting a warm reception throughout Des Moines, however Lazzaro has his eyes set on rolling out in different like sized geographic areas like Denver and eventually a nationwide rollout.
As the daily deals space continues to swell, more and more mobile startups are turning to engagement, reward and loyalty where the merchant has a little more say in what’s being used to promote their business. We recently reported on a Philly based startup called Lokalty which is offering yet another spin on customer reward and loyalty.
Check out FreebeeCards online and sign up so that you can join at launch.
You can follow FreebeeCards on Twitter here.