Forget clipping coupons, gimme Facebook


survey_smallADOTAS – I remember the last time I saw a person hand over cut-out coupons to a grocery store clerk, I stared as if I was watching an Amish person churn butter. Even the person behind the register acted like they were ancient documents written in an a dead language. (Granted, I am in NYC, which is not always representative of the rest of the country.)

Who still goes through the Sunday coupon insert and meticulously cuts out savings of 35 cents on a can of peas? Why bother when a brand will email you a sweet discount, send a text to your mobile or give you a rewards card? Even better, you can simply follow the brand on Twitter and wait for the right tweet to come to you. Certainly beats all that cutting — scissor hand cramps plague me no more!

A new survey by Razorfish suggests that the heir to the coupon clipper is the social media user who “befriends” a brand just for the deals. A third of Facebook users become fans of a brand to take advantage of special offers while 44% follow companies on Twitter, preying on discounts.

Forty percent of the 1,000 respondents on Facebook had become a fan of a brand, while 26% of tweeters followed a company. Dell, Amazon and Starbucks in particular have witnessed great success through social media platforms by flooding their outposts with offers. Starbucks, Razorfish noted, has nearly 5 million Facebook fans (add one more to that after I finish writing this — Daddy needs a fresh mocha).

However, brands have to ask if these social media friendships are real or are they just being used? Wait a second…


  1. The data in this article is interesting but I tend to interpret it a bit differently. Becoming a facebook fan of Apple or a twitter follower of NewEgg definitely serves a purpose (access to emerging online deals), but I don’t foresee the local-shopping coupon-clippers to be well-served by social media in its present form.

    I have never seen anyone use a mobile coupon at a grocery store…yet. And I can’t imagine that a mom of 4 is going to take the time on facebook or twitter to follow Kraft, Del-Monte, Charmin and hundreds of other companies and brands in hopes of saving money locally. Social media is doing a lot more for online shoppers than for local shoppers. I think grocery coupons will stick around a while longer.


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