While QR codes struggle to find their place, hashtags are here to stay. Chirpify has already done quite a bit with hashtag ecommerce, facilitating sales within social streams; and now they're taking it further with the launch of #actiontags. It's hard to say if this is a breakthrough that will facilitate ecommerce across platforms, including music and merch; or a complication that will introduce more noise into already noisy systems of communication.
The basic concept prior to the launch of #actiontags is that people would respond to an offer via Twitter or Facebook with terms such as "buy" and that would lead to a Chirpify transaction that could occur without leaving the site.
Here's Chirpify's explanation of #actiontags from today's announcement:
"Chirpify’s clients define and advertise #actiontags (e.g. #buy, #donate, #subscribe, #vote) coupled with a #campaigntag (typically clients have already defined this for their campaigns about what is being sold, fundraised, subscribed to, voted on, etc.). Then consumers respond by posting the #actiontag and #campaigntag to social media to transact."
"For example, a business running a campaign for #NewRedShoes on TV could display an ad with instructions to post “#Buy #NewRedShoes” to purchase. From there, the consumer would simply need to tweet, or post to Facebook or Instagram “#Buy #NewRedShoes,” and Chirpify will process the order."
So what Chirpify is essentially doing is taking the earlier action keywords that led to a transaction and using a broader range of such terms as #actiontags with the keyword for the thing being sold becoming the #campaigntag.
On the one hand this seems like it might confuse users since the new action requires a more complicated explanation.
Then again, shifting to this pairing of #actiontags and #campaigntags makes the social statement by a fan or shopper much more specific and trackable with all the key information contained within the tweet or Facebook post.
This use of hashtags also enables cross-platform campaigns, including television and printed material, which ultimately connects purchasers to the campaigner's social accounts as part of the process.
In an additional press briefing document, Chirpify points to four possible uses of their #actiontags:
TV & Second Screen
Overlay #actiontags during shows and to monetize 2nd-screen conversations
Outdoor & Print
Use #actiontags to make advertisements actionable in print, billboard and in-store
Use #actiontags at live concerts, sports events & for mobile participation
Use #actiontags for products, offers and contests with instant, in-stream conversion
I'm going to be watching for two things. Obviously how people respond is the key thing to observe. But given the public nature of hashtags, it will be interesting to see if Chirpify can pull off creating such a specific use for hashtags as a key aspect of their service.
[Thumbnail image: cover of Action Jackson soundtrack.]
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Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch/@crowdfundingm) also blogs at Flux Research and Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.