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Wrapp hits 1M mobile gift card redemptions

Wrapp is a mobile app that incorporates gift cards from more than 200 retailers and brands. Although the company also has a Web presence, the majority of use is taking place on smartphones.

“Steve Jobs said it three years ago, and it’s still true – mobile ads suck,” said Hjalmar Winbladh, cofounder/CEO of Wrapp, New York.

“The state of the art in mobile advertising – essentially Lilliputian versions of traditional display ads – simply don’t work on our tiny mobile screens,” he said. “Yet, mobile ad budgets in the United States are expected to increase from $2.3 billion in 2012 to almost $11 billion in 2016, because more and more of us spend more and more of our waking hours hunched over mobile screens.

For retailers and brands, Wrapp’s app is a friend-to-friend marketing platform. For consumers, Wrapp makes it super easy to give a gift to the people in their social graph.”

Give on mobile
Wrapp is a mobile app and a Web site.

The app syncs to a Facebook account and lets users scroll through a list of their friends to send gift cards to. To redeem the offers, users must download the app, which is available for iPhone and Android devices.

Wrapp claims that 90 percent of its usage is on smartphones, meaning that consumers are likely not only redeeming gift cards via mobile but also browsing and sending gift cards from their handsets.

Wrapp also recently announced that it has amassed one million users since launching 14 months ago in Sweden. The company entered the United States market last May.

The Wrapp Android app

Loyal users
One of the primary reasons that brands use Wrapp is to build loyalty, according to Mr. Winbladh.

For example, French cosmetics brand Clarins is using Wrapp as part of revamp of its brand image to target women under 25 years-old.

The company added a footer in three of the company’s email campaigns that let consumers know that they could send a free $10 Clarins gift card to their friends. The company also worked with Glamour magazine to give the magazine’s Facebook fans free gift cards as a prize for hitting one million fans. A campaign was also rolled out across Clarins’ own Facebook page.

The Facebook campaign was opened by 36,000 people and generated 250 “Likes” and 40 shares, per Wrapp. Thirty-five of the gift cards sent via Clarins’ Facebook page were redeemed while 28 percent from Glamour’s campaign were redeemed.

Additionally, the majority of gift cards were redeemed by Clarins’ target audience of women between the ages of 20 and 30 years-old.

“Gift cards are big business – $110 billion in the U.S. last year, expected to grow to $138 billion by 2015, according to CEB TowerGroup,” Mr. Winbladh said.

“By making gift cards digital and mobile, your gift cards can always be with you when you want to buy something,” he said.

“They can be used as a social, mobile marketing vehicle for targeted customer acquisition, driving just the people online that retailers want in their brick and mortar stores where more than 90 percent of all sales are still made despite the growth of ecommerce.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York