The Future of Coupons Could Be Bright with Vibes Smartphone Ads

The Future of Coupons Could Be Bright with Vibes Smartphone AdsEverything is going mobile these days.

Now, a “new kind of mobile ad promises a future in which you’ll never have to clip or print another coupon.”

Forget the clipping, forget the printing.

Vibes, a mobile marketing technology company, has developed a way for retailers to turn the ads they run on your smartphone into coupons — no additional apps needed,” according to CNN Money. “When you tap these ads, which are marked with “Save to phone,” you can store an offer to your Apple (AAPL, Tech30) Passbook or Google (GOOGL, Tech30) Wallet for future online purchases. Some coupons have a traditional barcode that can be scanned in stores.”

Advertisers might find this a very lucrative proposition when it comes to luring potential customers.

“The offers serve as a doorway to information about customers’ interests and behaviors — data that can be used for future ad targeting,” notes CNN. “For instance, if smartphone users have location tracking enabled, they can receive alerts when they walk by a store they have a coupon for.”

How does it work?

“Vibes’ new mobile wallet ads also allow marketers to interact with customers through notifications,” according to the story. “Once a promotion is pocketed to Passbook or Google Wallet, companies can update their offers, or promote their own apps and other content. When a coupon is about to expire, an advertiser can choose to increase the discount or extend the offer, and even circle the new expiration date.”

The Vibes strategy could also allow marketers to better grok the efficacy of online advertising campaigns. Knowing what discounts, graphics, and text spurred clicks — or, even better, redemption and purchases — is valuable information.

“We have a connection into [retailers’] point of sale to see if the loop is closed,” Vibes’ CTO John Haro told CNNMoney. “What we’re providing is the scale.”

The only potential glitch? Convincing consumers to accept the coupons knowing there will be “more data tentacles in their phones.”

“Haro said the only information his company can see is what kind of phone is being used, whether someone has seen an ad, or clicked, saved, removed, or deleted it,” explains CNN. “But other user data, including social media profiles (if the ad is placed within Facebook’s News Feed, for example) and location, are passed on to the companies paying for the ads.”

Vibes is currently working with several clients on their current Passbook and Google Wallet promos, including Men’s Wearhouse, Gap, Pep Boys, Sears, Home Depot, and Old Navy.