This month, Tim Bruderek, Senior Partner Development Manager at Acceleration Partners, chatted with Mark Marovich, Account Executive at FlipGive.
How did FlipGive get its start?
FlipGive is an offshoot of a company called Better the World (BTW) which was started in Toronto in 2009.
BTW was a technology and corporate social responsibility consulting firm - the first internationally Certified B Corporation - building 'technology for good.' BTW was officially reincorporated as FlipGive and launched in 2017 as a way to bring enterprise-level corporate social responsibility technology to brands and retailers looking to drive sales and brand goodwill.
What makes FlipGive unique?
Flipgive's "Give-marketing" is the antithesis of discounting – it allows marketers to leverage their dollars for good and support communities while driving new customers, incremental sales and loyalty through branded goodwill. FlipGive's 'give-back' vs 'cash-back' makes us very different from a typical loyalty publisher.
By helping parents offset the high cost of their kids' sports and activities every time they shop, we help brands build a meaningful connection with every purchase. FlipGive becomes a channel for driving new and loyal customers for life, without having to further discount. We drive a higher AOV than other loyalty publishers - 85% of our members tell us they are willing to spend more with brands who give back to their kids.
Traditional cashback sites offering deals, coupons or discounts do a good job of converting the consumer at the moment but do not inspire consumers to feel connected with the brand. Knowing that the key to cultivating a loyal, lifelong brand following is an emotional connection, FlipGive elevates brand sentiment while driving increased traffic and incrementality.
FlipGive's other key differentiator is our audience. FlipGive allows brands to tap into the spending power of groups - each team brings an average of 15 engaged parents onto the platform to shop. These are high-value, unique customers; 71% of our members have never shopped another cashback or loyalty program. This one-to-many group shopping model makes FlipGive an incredibly valuable digital channel for driving highly coveted customers who are motivated to spend more with the brand.
Can you tell us more about how FlipGive gives back to families?
FlipGive has over 400K active sports families across North America. 81% of FlipGive members are 30-45-year-olds, HHI moms who are active digital shoppers. We acquire our users via social and through partnerships in the youth sports space: governing bodies, associations and leagues like USA Football and Minnesota Hockey and partnerships with other sportech companies like Team Snap.
However, our audience finds us, their first step is to create a team page and invite other families and coaches on the team to join the campaign. Users shop their everyday household spend with over 700+ merchant partners in the FlipGive marketplace. With every purchase, a percentage of the sale (aka "the give") goes back to help support the team. To date, we've given back over $20M to help fund kids' sports and activities across North America.
How can advertisers be successful in partnering with FlipGive?
We work with a wide variety of advertisers with our top categories being General Retail, Travel, Sports, Home, Fashion and Electronics. We have a healthy mix across all categories of large legacy brands and retailers, niche players and up-and-comers.
Advertisers work with a FlipGive account manager to design custom promotional packages with mass placements and target campaigns across a full-funnel of inventory during key shopping events and seasonal promotions. What makes us particularly unique is that we follow two calendars - both the retail and sports calendar (from pre-season to off-season), so it is important to work with us to tap into all occasions.
You can see how we've driven success for other leading brands in our newly published case studies.
I know COVID-19 was particularly challenging for FlipGive. What are your plans to emerge from this successfully?
We definitely took a big hit (especially in the early COVID days) and we're still, like most, working our way through these challenging times. Thankfully, things have right-sided and we're bullish on coming out of this on the other side stronger than ever.
We are closely monitoring the return to youth sports across North America with our Back to Sport Tracking Page. COVID allowed us to re-focus on some key initiatives – a major update to our platform that we have ramped up in a big way is Personal Accounts. Traditionally our audience would sign up with us during the pre-season, shop like gangbusters during the season, then they wouldn't engage until the next season. Personal Accounts allows our members to "Earn Now, Play Later" meaning they can shop during the off-season and once they are officially on a team, transfer any accrued funds into their new team account.
Any other exciting new developments we should know about?
FlipGive recently launched a Team Shopping marketplace for team managers and coaches shopping for their whole team. Targeting high AOV group purchases for travel, entertainment, restaurant, takeaway, coffee, grocery, apparel, gear and equipment, FlipGive's Team Shopping marketplace gives brands direct access to the $17B North American youth sports market.
What is FlipGive doing to prepare for the Q4 holiday shopping season?
Harking back to our mantra of "Right time. Right place. Right offer." we have many relevant events for advertisers to optimize within, from available inclusion via CPA to hybrid Sponsorship events where we roll out the digital red carpet. We realize this has been a trying time for all advertisers. While we're all crossing our fingers for a successful Holiday, we know that each advertiser has unique goals and strategies, so we are focused on putting together campaigns that will deliver the maximum alignment and benefit.
Any last words of wisdom you'd like to share?
I'd like to share a lyric the band The Raconteurs from their song Together: " You want everything to be just like/The stories that you read, but never write/You've gotta learn to live and live and learn/You've gotta learn to give and wait your turn/Or you'll get burned."