Posted October 7, 2013 3:21 pm by with 0 comments

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The downside to most coupons is that you have to have them to use them. Logical, I know, but at least a few times a month I end up at a store or restaurant when the coupon for the establishment is at home on my desk. It makes me crazy but Bing is here to help.

Bing is currently testing a new program called Card-Linked offers in Seattle, Washington. The consumer signs up for the program, lists their credit card and debit card numbers, then a deal is automatically applied when they meet the discount conditions.

bing offers linked cardsHere’s a deal for 10% off a meal at Blue Ginger Korean Grill & Sushi in Bellevue. To get this deal, you only have to show up at the restaurant, eat, then pay with your linked card.

Since the discount doesn’t come off until you get your monthly credit card statement, Bing will send you a text alert to confirm the deal. That confirmation alert is important. Years ago, I signed up for Best Buy’s restaurant reward program (which makes no sense whatsoever, but. . . ). Every so often, I eat at one of the restaurants in the program, then, days later, I get an email congratulating me for earning points.

It would be much more effective if I got that notification while I was still at the restaurant or at least as soon as I got home. That would reinforce the brand name in my mind and I’d get that happy feeling that comes with knowing I just saved on my meal.

Here’s Bing’s pitch:

Bing Offers Card-Linked also gives advertisers:

    • Broad reach: Card Linked offers will give merchants the ability to advertise across Microsoft’s online properties such as, Skype, Windows Phone 8 and Bing Apps that reach an audience of millions.
    • Favorable economics: A CPA-model – gives advertisers much lower marketing fees.
    • Better engagement: Advertisers can establish long-term consumer relationships and offer more relevant deals by understanding consumer interests.
    • Controlled discounts: Ability to regulate promotions by limiting the risk of oversubscription of coupons or high consumer traffic within a narrow period.
    • Frictionless redemption: At checkout, there is no need to change the point of sale (POS) system, no additional effort required to train staff in handling redemptions, and no need to wait for payments from deal promoters. Advertisers can use time and resources effectively to grow their business based on insightful Bing Offers reports.

For all those reasons, it’s a great program for both businesses and consumers.

There’s one other element that makes this a fun program. Once you sign up, you don’t need to find and accept an offer to use it. That means I could get a surprise discount when I eat at a restaurant I picked at random. The only thing better than saving money, is saving money without even trying.

I don’t ever check Bing Offers, but when this comes to my area, I’ll be the first to sign up.