The folks over at SCVNGR invited us out to their press conference yesterday morning with some big news. Big news for this company seems to be the trend. Despite being around less than a year, the location-based mobile game startup has already made some impressive accomplishments. Most notable: surpassing 1 million users in record time for any checkin service and acquiring $15 million in funding.
I was always impressed with SCVNGR in their ability to literally change the game. If you haven’t already tried it, SCVNGR is probably the most fun you can have in the big world of mobile checkins. Beyond the simple geo-located checkin, there’s a sophisticated gaming mechanic of trivia questions, taking photos and other challenges to earn points. Their creativity and love of gaming elements takes shape once again with LevelUp. What’s that? Well, in short, it’s new type of local deal. I know what you’re thinking. There’s already Groupon, LivingSocial and countless other clones.
The new LevelUp app is a daily deal with a game layer. It helps businesses by promoting loyalty. Deal sites like Groupon and LivingSocial have been pretty good at providing one thing thus far: a massive influx of first/one-time customers. LevelUp aims to change that by creating more incentive for customers, the ability to unlock better deals as you (wait for it), level up. Unlock all 3 levels and you go from good, to better, finally to land with the best deals. Sounds like a good thing for everybody involved. But it gets better, what happens if nobody really cares and doesn’t give a damn about leveling up by making repeat visits/purchases with a business? Well, the folks at SCVNGR/LevelUp don’t get paid. That money goes to selected charities, seriously.
LevelUp launched simultaneously in our fair city of Philadelphia, as well as Boston just yesterday. You can sign up right now at theLevelUp.com and snag yourself a $5 coupon for $10 worth of food at Philly’s favorite burger joint, the unforgettable PYT. Should you decide to make this a one and done deal, the cash the startup would’ve netted ends up going toward Teach For America.
Will we one day see an incorporation of the location-based checkin game and this gaming-based daily deal? Maybe. They’re still waiting to see if this one will be as much of a hit as their first app.
Meanwhile, they’re heralding its arrival. Literally.