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Tag Archives: early adopters

Facebook Emails – Necessary evil?

Facebook is doing exceptionally well, with things going well, there is always a tendency to make it better, but all that should be done at the cost of making sure that 1), there is a definite need for the change, and 2) you actually have taken all the pros and cons in to account. Talking about the idea of having Facebook email:

Is It That Big of a Deal?
With so many free mail services to choose from already–do we really need a Facebook account?  Besides, doesn’t Facebook already have a message platform?  According to a Facebook blog post,“Messages is not email. There are no subject lines, no cc, no bcc, and you can send a message by hitting the Enter key.”  But the bigger question is, are people missing the email feature?  If there is no need or want–why create?

Many are predicting this email service will be just a big bullseye for spam.  Inside Facebook reports, “The first part of a users’ email address is their vanity URL address or http://www.facebook.com/name. Because those URLs are crawlable, that means bots will easily be able to find millions of email addresses to spam.”

Other critics are saying this is Facebook’s

Facebook-Email

answer to Google Wave, which didn’t get much traction.  “So far the early reactions to this new messaging system appear to be “meh” and “what’s the point of a facebook.com email address?” Some early adopters are finding it similar to Google Wave and that is not good news for Facebook,” reports  Boston.com.

Gmail Vs. Fmail?
For now Google isn’t going to be nervous of their new email competitor.  For one the Facebook email platform is too new, and second with their privacy record, Facebook might need a few updates before it could even be considered in the same realm as Gmail.  Tell us your impression of Facebook’s jump into email in the comments below.

 

Facebook has devised an interesting and people-centric approach to fighting spam. By giving out @facebook.com email addresses to all users, the company could have opened up potentially disastrous issues with spam. The first part of a users’ email address is their vanity URL address or http://www.facebook.com/name. Because those URLs are crawlable, that means bots will easily be able to find millions of email addresses to spam. However, Facebook is confronting this by using the social graph — only people who are a user’s friends or friends of friends can e-mail them. If a person not connected to a user e-mails them, it will go to the ‘Other’ part of the inbox. If they find those messages important, they can move them from that folder into the main part of the inbox. From then on, they’ll get all emails from that person immediately.

 

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Starbucks apps and Mobile Payment – A runaway success

The Starbucks brand may be synonymous with pricey lattes, but the coffee conglomerate has pushed a number of mobile initiatives in 2011 to make its name also stand for digital innovation. And the number says it is working!

Starbucks has now processed more than 26 million mobile payments since January.

Add to that the fact that more than 6 million of those mobile transactions occurred during the past nine weeks — which is more than double the 3 million transactions the company saw in the first nine weeks post release — and the data shows a growing number of consumers are going wallet-free and opting instead to pay for their daily coffee runs with the Starbucks mobile app.

“We’re already out there as the largest retailer doing mobile payments,” Brotman said. “To take that step and roll out [mobile pay], see it adopted, and then see it double … that trend is very exciting to us.”

Starbucks mobile pay, a prominent feature of the company’s iPhone and Android applications, was released in the U.S. in January. Consumers can use the mobile app to load money on to a digital Starbucks Card and present a 2D barcode to pay-by-scan at the register at more than 9,000 locations. The program launched in Canada in November and will land in the U.K. in January 2012.

So far millions of customers have done so. The mobile pay feature, is especially popular in New York, Seattle, San Francisco, Chicago, and San Jose, all cities that are replete with brand fans and technology early adopters.

Of the $2.4 billion loaded on to Starbucks Cards in fiscal year 2011, $110 million was loaded on to cards via Starbucks mobile apps. The mobile figure equates to just under 5% of all reloads, but does highlight a shift in how customers engage with Starbucks cards. “Customers love the ease of [Starbucks card] reload and autoload on their apps,” Brotman said.

Mobile app users are also tapping the company’s e-gifting feature to send the electronic gift of Starbucks from their phones. E-gifting was added to the apps in June — it was previously available as a web-only feature — and now accounts for 10% of total e-gifting volume.

The company’s early successes on mobile have allowed it to experiment with apps like Starbucks Cup Magic, a one-off holiday application released in mid November that adds a layer of augmented reality to the in-store experience. An app user can point his device’s camera lens at a holiday character on Starbucks cups, coffee bags or in-store signage, and watch the character come to life. The app has been used in this capacity more than 450,000 times to date, Brotman said.

Starbucks also now has 3.6 million customers in its My Starbucks Rewards loyalty program, and 2 million members have reached the highest Gold level.

Altogether, the stats show that the company’s Starbucks Card, loyalty, payment, e-gifting and drink builder modules and programs are converging into a single, mobile experience that customers truly love, Brotman said.

 
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Posted by on December 6, 2011 in Product Marketing

 

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