Shoe store chain Journeys launched a mobile rewards program July 29 with SCVNGR, a location-based mobile app. Journeys is the technology company’s first rewards partner.
Users of SCVNGR, available on the iPhone and Android smartphones, can earn $10 off purchases of $20 or more by scoring 20 points at Journeys. Consumers can earn points by performing challenges at specific locations, including checking in, taking a photo or performing a specified activity. One Journeys challenge requires users to “pick the shoes you’d break in on your favorite skateboard. Rock them, and show the camera some attitude!”
SCVNGR, into which Google invested $4 million last December, is a direct competitor of Foursquare and Gowalla, all of whom are jockeying to be the most-recognized location-based social service.
“The core unit of SCVNGR is this thing called the challenges, as opposed to the check-in (on Foursquare),” said Seth Priebatsch, SCVNGR’s 21-year-old CEO. “We think of ourselves as game-first, then social utility. I think they think of themselves as a social network with game elements.”
SCVNGR is working to add retailers nationwide and local businesses in 10 markets as rewards partners, Priebatsch said. SCVNGR expects to announce at least 50 local partners in both Boston and Philadelphia August 15.
Priebatsch said he tells prospective partners that the app will drive traffic to their locations, increase customer engagement, create a viral buzz about their business and increase sales. He added that no personal data is being collected.
“Because it is fun and because it is clean and because it is enjoyable, it’s insanely effective,” Priebatsch said. “We hold ourselves to a very high standard. We bring tremendous value to our partners. We bring tremendous value to our consumers, and we don’t do anything to endanger that ecosystem. And when you start to get into that follow-up mentality, it feels a little dangerous.”
Journeys did not immediately respond to calls seeking comment.