Mobile marketing firm Vibes wants to turn banner ads into coupons for your digital wallet.
Today the company is launching a new product called WalletAds, which will allow advertisers to make their traditional mobile advertisements into clickable deals and discounts that you can store in Apple Passbook or Google Wallet.
The next time you visit or shop at the store that sponsored the discount, your coupon will automatically be applied to your shopping total when you pay with Apple Pay or Google Wallet. If you enable your wallet with geo-location, the coupon can send you a notification if you’re near a store where you can use it.
Advertisers also have the option to turn that coupon into a virtual loyalty card. Since Passbook doesn’t delete coupons once they’re used, they can be refreshed.
“The pass becomes a living, breathing loyalty card, and you can send messages/personal notifications to the wallet,” said CEO Jack Philbin, whose company has been around since 1998. He says WalletAds will also give advertisers better insight into whether mobile ads are actually driving sales, with data on how many people clicked on and downloaded an ad versus how many people used the coupon.
With the launch of Apple Pay and many merchants updating their payment terminals in preparation for the switch from magnetic stripe credit cards to chip and pin, 2015 is expected to be the year that mobile wallets start taking off.
But so far adoption has been slow, largely because paying with a mobile wallet in stores is no easier than paying with a credit card. However, where mobile wallets stand to gain traction is in facilitating transactions on your phone.
“There’s a huge influx of money going into promoting Apple Pay,” said Philbin. “But the reality is, all these retailers aren’t going to have the payment terminals [to support Apple Pay] for a while. The bridge to having a successful launch is to get people interacting with their brand in Passbook.”
Before mobile payments go mainstream, advertisers may want to start seeding digital wallets with coupons in order to make their campaigns more effective down the road.