Tag Archives: American Express

Google Wallet makes mobile payments a reality.

Years ago, when I was working in mobile marketing, mobile payments were all the rage.

Brands were just starting to experiment with SMS, and premium SMS messaging offered content creators an opportunity to monetize their mobile campaigns.

If someone with a text-messaging enabled mobile device saw your call to action, “Text WAYNE to 12345 to get Lil’ Wayne’s newest single!”), they could type in the keyword, send it to a short code and Voila! they were listening to Weezy right from their mobile phone.

Of course, it didn’t always work that smoothly or all the time.

If you had Verizon phone, for example, which restricted hyperlinks, good luck trying to click through to the URL provided on the link you received.

Or if you hit your monthly messaging limit, you wouldn’t be able to send or receive text messages at all.

And at the time, mobile payments were restricted to paying for premium mobile content on your wireless carrier bill.

In order to complete a purchase, there was a double opt-in process, where the user had to validate that they wanted the content and understood the costs and conditions associated with the offer.

Typically, taking advantage of these premium offers involved giving your wireless carrier AND the aggregator AND (in some instances) the content platform provider a portion of the fees associated with that purchase.

Subscription chat lines and information services, like KGBKGB, sprung up to tap into users’ voracious appetite for texting.

You couldn’t buy tangible things with your mobile device.

Outside of wallpapers, ringtones and music downloads, mobile content was the only thing you could really purchase.

Today, that’s no longer the case.

Smartphones, mobile web sites, and mobile apps let you use your mobile phone to purchase virtually anything.

You’re no longer tethered to your wireless carrier if you want buy something.

iTunes and the proliferation of copycat app stores mean that you can cop plenty of compelling content right to your device.

And not have AT&T or Verizon Wireless mucking about in the transaction.

But there’s a different mobile payments space growing and maturing.

We’ve seen early glimpses of that with PayPal.

Apps like Square that have turned your mobile phone into a payment processing center.

In Europe and Asia, paying using your mobile device is commonplace.

But here in the states, the growth of mobile payments has advanced at a snail’s pace.

Until now.

Google Wallet is a mobile payment system that allows its users to store their debit cards, credit cards, loyalty cards, and gift cards on their mobile phones.

Using near-field communication (NFC), Google Wallet lets users make secure payments by simply tapping their phone on any PayPass-enabled terminal at checkout.

Although Google Wallet launched in 2011, it was only this August, that they set up expanded support to all major credit and debit cards including Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover.

What does it all mean?

Well for one, you’re no longer reduced to making mobile payments solely with PayPal.

More importantly, the tedious process of entering your payment information, name, address, credit card number, expiration date, security code, etc., is as simple as providing your username and password.

This is a real boon for online retailers, who see the majority of their drop offs occurring at checkout.

The best thing about Google Wallet, unlike PayPal (the carriers) and virtually any other merchant processing system, is that they don’t charge processing fees.

No fees?

That’s awesome!

Mind you, I’m not a Google person myself.

Google Wallet doesn’t work on iOS devices.

So unless there’s an app in the works, hundreds of millions of Apple users will be in the dark.

But big up to all you Android users, who have the ability to truly experience what the mobile revolution is shaping up to be…

At least as it relates to mobile payments.

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SoLoMo Profile: WeMakeCoolSh.it

The final company which will be presenting at ScenePR’s Starters+Startups: The Future of SoLoMo & You, is WeMakeCoolSh.it (whose name alone is cool).

I started my research on them, by once again, visiting their website, which is also very cool.

The WeMakeCoolSh.it website is way cool.

Being presented with a number of different thumbnails from which I could select, I opted for the top left box, where I learned about Matt+Mark, WeMakeCoolSh.it’s founders.

FYI, theses guys are BEASTS.

Their combined resumes are a veritable Who’s Who of agency luminaries, and include stints at Pepsi, Sony, Philips, IBM, Nike, American Express, DHL, MoMA, LEGO and TiVO (Matt) and R/GA , Organic, Tribal DDB, Ogilvy, Disney, CNN and Adobe (Mark).

From there, I headed back to the home page and clicked on the L Train Network box, which took me to the video where they talked about the pirate network they built for the L train in New York.

Since WeMakeCoolSh.it may be talking about their L Train project, I decided to dig a little deeper and check out more of the related content they offered on the site.

So I checked out the flyer they made to promote the L Train network.

This is the flyer that WMCS made to promote their pirate network.

I got lost on a few Sony Ericsson Xperia Studio videos, especially, this one:

After I perused a bunch of additional entries on their site, I decided to see if they had any apps in the iTunes app store.

They don’t have any.

But they have created two apps in the past (while with other agencies), one for Staples

This is an app created in a former (agency) life for the WMCS crew.

and another for XBOX.

This app isn't available any longer.

I looked for these guys on Facebook (and couldn’t find them) and on Twitter (and found them).

But I get that these guys ‘get it’ and won’t hold the failure to (be like sheep and) have a Facebook page against them.

I’m really looking forward to this presentation, and if I haven’t invited you yet, please try to come through and check out all the presenters on Wednesday, January 25, 2012 form 6:30 to 8:30 pm, at the Showbiz Store & Cafe, 19 W 21st Street, NY, NY 10010 (ground floor).

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