Wow or Whoa? How about Chair Miles rather than Air Miles?

April 22, 2009 at 11:17 PM 1 comment

One of my favorite expressions is “great business ideas are like buses – there’s one every five minutes”. Since I can’t do them all I thought I might offer up an occasional ‘bus’-iness idea for someone to consider through my blog from time to time. So here is another one (the first was in my previous post about business insurance through a social network). How about Chair Miles instead of Air Miles?  Read on and I welcome feedback. Wow or Whoa?  You decide…

I get excited when I find new ways to create win-win relationships between companies and their potential customers. One such idea is “Chair Miles”. My favorite graphic-designer-by-day-singer-in-spandex-by-night (Derek Learmonth) came up with the name that gave me the idea. Wouldn’t it be great if businesses could give website visitors points (or chair miles) in relation to the amount of time that a visitor spent on a website. A way to reward a consumer for doing their research on your website rather than doing it elsewhere.

Of course a website would need to still have content that was good enough to keep the consumer’s attention but today the longer you can keep a visitor on your site the more chance there is for you to earn an opportunity for a meaningful and profitable relationship with that customer. What if you were part of a network of websites that offered Chair Miles? Just like the network of businesses that offer and redeem Air Miles today but here is the great part – there is no requirement for the visitor to actually make a purchase… just spend time.

Okay, so what about people who abuse the system? What about the visitors who are just trying to rack up their Chair Miles and aren’t legitimately interested in the site they are on. Easy. The technology already exists (developed by ASL Internet – yes, completely biased self-promotion) to track website visitors and their behaviour without using “cookies” or other tricks that could be blocked as malware or deleted when the visitor clears their internet browser cache.

Applying this technology would be simple and when a few rules are added to the equation  you would have a great way to reward visitors with Chair miles. Each business could set their own rules… one chair mile for each 10 pages viewed… maximum 5 chair miles per session… double chair mile promotions for sumitting a response or returning to the site more than once… you get the idea… earn while you surf.

Chair miles could be redeemed by Chair Mile Members at participating merchants who would benefit from the advertising and promotional opportunities that being a partner with Chair Miles would bring to their companies. Merchants who rewarded visitors with chair miles would pay the Chair Miles organization a tiny fee per Chair Mile for the benefit of having the rewards program to offer their website visitors. These businesses too would benefit from being part of the advertising and promotion around the rewards program. It would not only help them retain their visitors on their sites for a longer time but would also attract new traffic to their sites from the promotion itself.

What do you think? Wow or Whoa?


Entry filed under: Entrepreneur / Business Ideas, Tech Wows-n-Whoas.

Wow or Whoa? What would you think of insurance through a social network? Recollections and musings about Singapore

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Ruben Rivero  |  July 20, 2009 at 11:57 AM

    I actually think it is a great idea!!!! All my web sites are new and I constantly update them, but starting a website from scratch takes a long time to be recognized by Google and such. Please keep me posted…


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