Dympol hopes it can catch you at your next checkout for online purchases. The company has created a way to let charities and businesses deliver a final pitch to upsell you to a donation just before you pay for something online.
It’s another example of physical marketing — like all the goods that you can purchase at the checkout stand in a supermarket — being applied to the online market. Dympol calls it “Charitable Checkout,” a service that makes it easy to raise money for charitable causes during online checkout.
Upselling is a pretty old technique in e-commerce checkouts. But Dympol hopes to spice it up by getting celebrities who you know and like to make a personal pitch for you to donate to a cause. The company uses its Dympol E-Commerce Sponsorship Platform to deliver coupon offers and other pitches during online checkout.
The company was founded by Jay Ziskrout, chief executive, and co-founder of the band Bad Religion.
“What we are doing is connecting brands with target consumers as they are buying personally meaningful things and when they are in a mood to spend money,” Ziskrout said in an interview.
The band Switchfoot will use the Charitable Checkout during checkouts for its annual Bro-Am Festival. The Hurley division of Nike has committed to provide more than $100,000 in gift card incentives, and another major sponsor may join shortly.
Combining the charitable pitch with celebrities or known brands that are relevant to the consumer is a good approach, since brands spend about a third of all marketing dollars on getting people to like them. Brands tend to plaster brand imagery around everything people care about so the brand image benefits by association.
But Dympol says its e-commerce platform is a superior approach that combines the relevance of something like Google AdWords with the engagement of branded entertainment and the accountability of performance marketing. It catches users as they are ready to spend money by delivering a “personally meaningful” connection with someone, like a celebrity making a direct pitch for a charity. Conversion rates (the percentage of people who accept the offer to donate) can be as high as 20 percent, far above the usual upsell benchmarks.
With Charitable Checkout, a celebrity can appear in a video, offering to match donations made by their fans. When fans give, they can get brand-sponsored gift cards of equal or greater value to the donation. Social components and a Facebook app complete the process, allowing customers to share their donations. Dympol thinks it will work better because its e-commerce offers are closely tied to metrics.
Besides offering Charitable Checkout, Dympol also offers something it calls Cheaper Checkout. There, brands can offer a coupon at checkout. Advertisers pay for the ad when users accept the discount offer. The Dympol platform can also be inserted in non-e-commerce systems, such as a Facebook page or a blog.
The company has four employees and was founded in 2008. Dympol competes with other branded advertising as well as with performance marketing firms such as TrialPay. Dympol has raised $400,000 in seed funding from Jeffrey Ubben, chief executive of Value Act Capital and former chairman of Martha Stewart Omnimedia. Other investors include company principals and advisors.
More deals are in the pipeline with talent agencies, management companies, and broadcast networks. That will give Dympol access to rosters of music artists, athletes, and personalities. The company is currently raising a new round of funding.