Social Commerce Strategies in the Mobile Age


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My article on Excess Capacity Commerce from the October issue of Transaction World Magazine. The reprint also features a half page advertisement for our upcoming Social Mobile Payments Conference in Miami, Florida - November 6 - 8 at the Biscayne Bay Marriott Hotel & Marina. For more information please visit

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Social Commerce Strategies in the Mobile Age

  1. 1. REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION OF TRANSACTION WORLD MAGAZINE SOCIAL MEDIA SOCIAL COMMERCE STRATEGIES IN THE MOBILE AGE by Bruce Burke I’m a speed reader. Utilizing that talent you should lower their price and find I’m often able to find common threads buyers with an immediate need for your that run across the vast amount of infor- product or service. As you can imagine, mation I review daily. One of the most transportation and lodging are two mar- common reccurring themes I’ve seen kets that flourish under such conditions. lately is the idea of selling excess capacity Priceline and are two of the using a combination of social media and original excess capacity e-commerce mobile payments. sites. But using the combination of apps, A pioneer in electronic point-of-sale systems, Bruce Burke has extensive experience in There are a plethora of examples; I’ll mobile broadband and ubiquitous pay- electronic transactions, point-of-sale, name a few to get you in the right frame- ment capabilities, new companies are eCommerce and mCommerce. He can be of-mind. In the lodging category there achieving record growth by providing contacted at are companies like Airbnb & Hotel services when and where you need them. or by phone at 727-612-5775. Tonight. In transportation there’s Uber & Outside of places to stay and ways to zipcar and in human capital there are get there, there are other companies cap- products like Zaarly and TaskRabbit. turing market share with this same idea The idea is that when you have an in mind. Foap, a Swedish company start- excess capacity of resources available, ed by travel industry veterans who were
  2. 2. REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION OF TRANSACTION WORLD MAGAZINE | OCTOBER 2012always disappointed in the availability of When anyone can sell anything, to Using any one of the number ofstock photos, uses their app to source any anyone, in any place at any time - the idea devices that plug into smart phones andof the billion camera phones that were of a store with static shelves and registers tablets almost everyone can accept pay-shipped in the last few years. Using the really doesnt make as much sense as it ments anywhere. Being able to simplyapp, consumers can submit and tag used to. Im still astounded when I go and securely accept payment for goodsimages and even accept photo assign- into wireless stores and find that the and services is outfitting millions ofments which are then sold as stock clerks have me step over to the register to mobile merchants and Saturday-morn-images for publishers. check out and make my payment. Why ing market vendors with the same tools I recently heard Bo Fishback, CEO of aren’t they using their own devices and as the big boys.Zaarly, speak about sourcing a custom fit capabilities to sell their devices and capa- A Facebook friend who’s not in theset of red plaid pajamas to match his new bilities – sell the service, using the service payments business recently sent me ason’s onesies. Then there is the anecdote … I digress. message stating “We got one of thoseof the reporter who read about a to-die- In todays economy, excess capacity mobile dongles you told us about andfor burger in a travel magazine while entrepreneurs are rejiggering the stan- we absolutely love it - thanks for the goodrelaxing in his hotel at SXSW. Using the dard market for services by adding in the advice!” These new mobile paymentZaarly app he announced that he’d pay capability to access inventory on-the-fly capabilities have opened up a whole$100 for one of those burgers if delivered from anywhere, and then applying rules new world of possibilities, selling excessright then and there. Punchline: and scaling pricing based on real-time resources, making people and companiesTen minutes later there was a knock supply and demand: There are a lot of more productive and bringing theat his hotel room door, and upon answer- variables that affect supply and demand product to the people; where and whening it, he found an enterprising young traffic, weather and fuel prices are just a they need it. These are some incredibileperson with his fresh hot burger, with few factors that can be used to formulate and increasingly mobile times. nall the trimmings. costs and real-time supplies.