Another ‘gift card exchange’- site is emerging, but this one, by a company called Leverage, focuses on the customer information inherent in great volumes of gift cards in a single database.
Leverage aim is to focus on the CRM aspect of gift cards. It forecasts that 40% of its business will be from retailers selling their cards to Leverage. Leverage will on-sell these gift cards to consumers. Simultaneously, Leverage intends to sell its consumer information back to retailers and manufacturing advertisers. Consumers using the site are told that they will receive targeted promotions.
Somewhere, initiatives such as this makes my alarm bells go off. It makes me a tat wary of the Internet as marketing tool. To me, CRM is a way for a retailer to build close, lasting, win-win relationships with its customers.
I’m not sure why it would give its golden customer information away to a third party such as Leverage. Rather than CRM being synonymous with Total Customer Care Management, the emphasis here appears to be on sheer independent profit for a third party provider who is leveraging retailers’ own customer data.
About the Author
copyright, Vera Lang, 2007