Direct Line Blog

Mobile coupon overload

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Although we're all overwhelmed by e-mail, I find that I keep signing up for new daily deal e-mail newsletters. I have at least five going right now, including Blackboard Eats (the foodie in me), Groupon, LivingSocial, Scoutmob (which just opened in New York), Daily Candy and just yesterday I discovered Yipit, which aggregates the local deals for me! Phew, maybe I can finally pare a few down.

When I heard that yet another daily deal site planned to launch in New York - FreshGuide, from the folks at Sugar Inc. - I began to wonder how many deals one town can take. Of course, each of these deal sites - and many others not named - distinguish their offering in some unique way. Some are about food, others about fashion; some require group buying, while others are yours to use immediately.

All of these sites, whether they admit it or not spring from that decidely old-fashioned habit of clipping coupons from newspaper circulars (OK, I admit that I still do this). I imagine that the recession that began in 2007 helped fuel the phenomenal growth of companies like Groupon. (Ed note: Check the August 23 issue of DMNews for a one-on-one interview with Groupon's president Rob Solomon.) Yet, it's the innovators in this category that will survive. Daily Candy, the oldest of this group, was founded in 2000 in New York and later bought by Comcast. It now includes numerous spin-offs, and just this week, it released a new app that will alert shoppers of deals as they walk by a sale. Innovative? Yes. Useful? Check. Direct marketing at it's best? For certain.

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