Micro-trend 3: Group buying
Groupon really set the stage to prove out the viability of the concept for group buying — that is, offering steep discounts on goods and services if a number of folks sign up for the offer. Others include LivingSocial, Yipit, Dealon, and BuyWithMe. The ability to share deals and the capacity to drive revenue makes this sector sing, and this trend will likely continue to expand, with copycats, startups, big media players, and individual brands rolling out different and better variations this year.
Expect more publishers and media companies to either launch their own initiatives or partner with Groupon (or others) to capture the incremental revenue and other benefits this sector has to offer. For example, media companies that recently launched their own initiatives include AOL’s group buying site, WOW, and The Knot’s group-buying program at Deals. WeddingChannel.com, And on the brand side, Wal-Mart launched a new service called CrowdSaver, which is set up to offer an 18 percent discount on a plasma TV once it gets more than 5,000 likes.