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How Grabbon uses Social Influence Marketing

While checking out Facebook today I noticed an ad for Grabbon (facebook ads are definitely getting better). Curious about the deals they are offering in Bangalore, I decided to check it out.

The How Grabbon Works Page says “Grabbon’s mission is to help you find awesome things to do around your city without emptying out your wallet. Leave it to us to find exciting things to do and see amazing discounts off the original price.”

Grabbon seems to have some good deals to offer especially for food. But getting the deal isn’t as straight forward as it seems and therein lies it power.

So let’s break that down – Grabbon offers an exclusive deal every day. If you like the deal you book it by paying a small token amount. However doing this does not mean you get the deal. The deal has a minimum requirement of bookings and only if that requirement is met will you get your coupon. If the minimum number is not reached your amount is refunded.

The key to Grabbon’s success will lie in this minimum requirement. Imagine that they are offering a deal that you really want and that deal requires 10 bookings. At this point, at some level, Grabbon and you have the same need (10 bookings). To get your deal you will pass the information onto your friends and influence them to buy it too. This is where the message goes viral.

Grabbon’s deals are an excellent example of social influence marketing. Everyone benefits, it’s a win-win – the restaurant gets a lot of mentions, Grabbon the traffic and you the coupon.

Have you seen any examples like it? What do you think of Social Influence Marketing? Have you noticed it in your day-to-day life?

March 11, 2010   2 Comments

Review: Sendible – A Multi-Platform Social Media Scheduler

I am constantly on the lookout for good social media sites and here is my latest find.

Sendible helps you to connect with your friends, family, customers and co-workers by sending all types of messages from one place – now or in the future. I took a quick look around and liked what I saw though it still can do better.

The sign-up was pretty easy and clean. Had to wait a while though for the confirmatory email. The welcome page has a listing of all the sites you can schedule on, and there are quite a few. You can post on Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn and Twitter among others. You can also schedule Blogs, Email and even Flickr.
sendible12 Before being able to use any of the services, you will have to enter details of the networks you want to use. You can connect not only to your Facebook profile but also your Facebook pages. That’s a nice touch!

You can import your contacts from most emails services. Sendible supports Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo or you can use a .csv file. The process is simple and easy and you also have the option of selecting which contacts to import. The Address book is well spaced out and easy to navigate.

The email setup is easy to use and even lets you blind copy everyone if you are mass mailing. The Multi Message allows you to send/schedule on multiple platforms and when scheduling you can also make messages recurring to act as reminders, however the scheduler right now only lets you go upto 30 hours. Hope they soon include days, weeks and months.

The sms scheduler allows only 160 characters and lets you get all replies to your sms as an email. A great marketing tool! However you have to buy credits to use the sms feature, hence not free 🙁

Sendible seems to be the only tool I have come across recently that allows multi-social network scheduling/posting for free. (I use SocialOomph quite a bit and I hate the fact that Facebook scheduling is not free). When scheduling status updates you can include URL’s and images too!

Sendible also lets you setup reminders for yourself by email or sms. Though am not so kicked by this as I can do this on my phone or outlook as reminders anyway.

On repeat login you will get to your homepage which is quite nifty. At a glance you can see scheduled messages, tasks and birthdays. You can also send out quick emails and status messages.

Something to note is that all messages will have ads in them unless you have a Sendible Pro account. The paid service also offers an newsletter sign-up widget for your blog. The widget adds the customer data to your Sendible list and so you can schedule and send out your newsletter right from here. You can even customize your newsletter and send them to select groups.

On the whole a great social media scheduler! It caters to almost everyone’s needs.

Photo Credit – Sendible

January 21, 2010   1 Comment

Using Twitter for promotion – Part 2: How to engage and interest tweeple with your tweets

Tweeple In my last post on How Twitter is like a Newspaper we talked about choosing a target audience for your promotion and researching their needs and wants. But, just posting what they want isn’t enough. It is important to build variety, connect with tweeple, not spam and balance your tweets along with promoting yourself.


Don’t limit yourself to what you are doing or your area of work, look at how you can build-in variety. For e.g. Apart from tweeting about what Outdoor Corporate Training you are doing, your tweets can be about –

1. tips on outdoor activities
2. your learning from your programs
3. latest developments in your field
4. quotes on the outdoors and training
5. humor based on outdoors
6. good blog posts
7. recommend others who are good in the field

These are some examples but you should not limit yourself to them either. Look at all that your audience would be interested in; and remember that they would also have varied interests.


Don’t be a robot and just post headings and links. Share information about yourself and what you are doing; but in an interesting manner. People may not be interested in knowing what training session you are doing but they sure would like to know how you overcame a certain challenge.

Follow and watch what tweeple talk about. Reply and start conversations with people. Make your presence felt but tweet meaningfully not just because you have to say something.

Search on twitter with keywords related to your field of expertise and help tweeple out with answers and suggestions.

If you find an interesting tweet or information, retweet it. Passing on information helps your followers and also builds a connection with the person who posted the original tweet. E.g.

RT @devakishor The best tutorial/guide as to how we can use Linkedin

Use the ‘@’ symbol not only to reply but to also draw attention and connect. (Read my post on ‘How to use the ‘@’ on twitter to your best advantage’)

Use hashtags to help people find your tweets. Hashtags are just like tags on blogs only add inline to your tweet. To create a hashtag simply place the ‘#’ symbol before a relevant word. E.g. #outdoor

For finding relevant hashtags being used in your field search or what the hashtag ?! – both are hashtag directories.

Use the #FollowFriday hashtag to recommend people. When suggesting people remember to include the reason for recommending them.

Watch your twitter stream for questions or someone asking for help. If you know someone who can help or answer the question make sure to recommend them. Connecting people is a great way to network.


No one likes to listen to only one person talk in a discussion room. Hence remember tweet but don’t overdo it. If your tweets clog your followers timelines there is a high probability they will unfollow you. I personally think you should tweet between 10-30 times in a day and no more.

If your tweet is not relevant to everyone and just one person – DM (Direct Message) them as there is no point in telling the world about it.


The last but most important point to remember is to balance your tweets. A good mix of information, answers, replies, retweets and promotion will keep your followers happy and bring you more followers.

I recommend only one promotional tweet in every 10 tweets and about 5-7 retweets in a day. The rest of your tweets can be a mix of information and replies.

How do you twitter? Please share your best practices in comments. Thanks.

September 22, 2009   2 Comments

Using Twitter for promotion – Part 1: Imagine Twitter to be a newspaper…

Twitter's like newspaper It’s not about what you are doing or what you want… Promotion done right is about what your audience wants and needs.

A couple of days earlier a friend asked me how he could use twitter to promote himself and his work. Our long discussion motivated me to write a series about twitter and how to use it right. With no further delay, here’s the first…

Imagine a newspaper. It has headlines, news pieces, editorial, advertisements, etc. All of this gets divided into local, regional, national and international. Another way it gets split is politics, entertainment, sports, finance, etc. There are a lot of sub-divisions in one newspaper.

If you walked down your street in the morning you would see different newspapers lying at your neighbours doorsteps. There are a large variety of newspapers available and people choose their paper based on the kind of news and reporting they are interested in.

Do you see how twitter is like a newspaper? – Its has 140 character headlines with links to more, a variety of tweets depending on the persons interest, self and other advertising and followers who can choose tweeple to follow depending on interest.

So how does a newspaper decide what news they would run and how they would report it? And how do you think they could increase their readership? Newspapers choose news based on the areas they have experts in and what their audience wants. But if they want to increase their viewership they first need to look into what kind of readers they want. After deciding the target audience they need to find out what their new audience wants and deliver.

Twitter works similarly; if you want more followers you need to first list out the kind of audience you want for yourself and your work. Then research the interests of your audience using a tool like Twitter Search to understand their needs.

Now that you know what information to provide to capture interest and give people a reason to follow you, remember that too much information can also turn people off. So my next topic in this series is how much to tweet and how to balance it.

So what do you relate twitter to?

Photo Credit: Xeni

September 15, 2009   3 Comments

An interesting book marketing technique

Last week I came across a blog by Tony Eldridge the author of ‘The Samson Effect’ (link to blog given below). Through this blog Tony was trying something new, something I haven’t seen very often in book marketing – He was giving the book away for everyone to read. That doesn’t make sense, does it? An author would want people to buy his/her book, that’s the way to make money.

But what if you gave the book away slowly, chapter by chapter; just one chapter every week. Now that changes the game a bit…

People start to read the blog and follow it regularly; that’s you first benefit, you’ve got increased viewership. Now as people read the blog slowly the story gets gripping and they don’t want to wait another week to read what happens next, so they buy the book. And that increases sales.

Of course there are other benefits, media coverage, twitter exposure, people talking and telling other people about the book…

It will be interesting to see how Tony’s experiment works… In the meantime I have only one complaint; its Monday morning here in India much before the US and I have a long wait before I see that next chapter…

The Samson Effect Blog

May 18, 2009   No Comments

A multi-purpose tool for Book Marketing

Ok I know again I haven’t posted in a bit but am trying… ok ok… will try harder… Now onto today’s topic…

Let me tell you a little about this product or tool – BookBuzzr, I am marketing right now. (which will also explain why am so interested in Internet Marketing – this is fun! 🙂 )

BookBuzzr can be found at and is targeted mainly for authors and readers. Authors can upload either their entire book or just an excerpt in PDF format for people to view. The excerpt or book can be viewed in a reader (BookBuzzr) that feels like a book as you can flip pages, zoom in and out and read on a full screen. (See below) But it isn’t just so simple and neither does it end here.

Authors can use the BookBuzzr widget on their sites which includes websites, blogs, social sites like facebook, myspace, bebo, etc.(60 different sites) and just about anywhere on the internet. They can even email it. Now that sounds cool right! Authors can paint the town red with their books and that’s a lot of marketing and publicity. But it doesn’t even end here…

What most authors don’t realise is that this tool can be used by anyone; hence fans, readers, friends, etc. can also help by posting the book widget on their sites. Now just think how much the book’s publicity and marketing has increased by just involving the people around you. This is the real key…

And to top it all – BookBuzzr is free… That just increases the reasons why it should be used to its maximum potential…

Oh and fReado and Phyllis Zimbler Miller are currently running a Memorial Day contest. Do check it out –

A few Examples of the widget –

Mrs. Lieutenant – Phyllis Zimbler Miller

The Samson Effect – Tony Eldridge

Too Many Visitors For One Little House – Susan Chodakiewitz

May 15, 2009   No Comments