Trish’s Comment: Before reading this blog, I thought I had a clear idea of the meaning of ‘social media payments’, ‘social payments’ and ‘social mobile payments’. Dr. Mark’s article peaked my interest and prompted me to do a bit of research. I quickly have found the following companies, each developing a very different interpretation of social payments:
1) Pay with a Tweet - It basically allows people to use they social network and social clout to pay for items. For example, if you are trying to raise awareness of your work – whether a book, a CD, a film… - you can allow people to download it just by paying you with a tweet, which will allow you ‘free’ advertisement across your customers’ social networks.
2) American Express Specials – As we have discussed before in this blog, this is a partnership between AmEx and foursquare to allow discounts to AmEx customers that check-in with foursquare at select merchants.
3) Pygg - This is a company that went public in October, 2011, that allows customers to create a Pygg account – currently limited to $100 – from which they are then able to transfer money instantly to friends via Twitter and soon via e-mail and Facebook.
4) Zumogo – Last but not least, this is an app created by Propay (Dr. Mark is Senior VP for Market Strategy at ProPay) that allows users to order and pay for goods at participating retailers. For example, on your way to your favorite coffee shop and before you enter, you can order and pay for your coffee and bagel so that everything is ready for your to pick up as you enter the store.
After researching these four apps, it was clear to me that we are still in the process of defining the concept of ‘social payments’ and that each of them brings a different set of challenges when merging together the social aspect with the required security and privacy needed around payments. Precisely Dr. Mark’s point.
I will be following closely the next Social Mobile Payments Conference & Exhibition scheduled to take place in April, which she also mentioned on her article. Attend if you can. Just the list of speakers seems great!