* Executive Summary
Level Up’s mission is to organize a phone payment system to make it universally acceptable and useful. Level Up advances global commerce by providing a critical economic link among restaurants, individual users and financial institutions while increasing customer loyalty and developing payment solutions. Level Up offers coupons and incentives to loyal customers who accumulate business over time with a certain company. As one of the first major companies to process mobile commerce in the United States, Level Up has tremendous potential as a company, and improving customer awareness may be the cornerstone to success in the future.
* Situation Analysis
The Level Up method: 1.) Scan your QR code 2.) Receive your digital receipt 3.) Earn Credit towards future purchases
What is the external and internal environment like? * Smart phone payment methods have been slow to catch on in the US * Smart phone payment methods are already popular in South America and Asia.
The external environment for Level Up is ripe for growth. With more and more average people carrying mobile devices such as the IPhone and Android phones Level Up stands to grow.
The ‘chicken and the egg problem’: Meaning the market will not evolve until the mobile payment method is both desired by consumers and offered by businesses. But businesses are hesitant to offer such payment methods when they aren’t confident in a positive response from customers.
“Furthermore, mobile payments are characterized by a network effects problem: consumers will not demand them until they know that enough merchants accept them, and merchants will not implement the technology until a critical mass of consumers justifies the cost of doing so.” (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston paper)
Strengths - Level Up is a relatively new business. It is a highly attractive payment system for the retail and food industries.
Weaknesses - Level Up may struggle to expand into the higher end businesses that rely more on brand name and built-in brand loyalty. Examples may include Jos. A Bank or Tiffaney Co. Jewelry stores. Stores in which the customer is not expected to need to return immediately for return business would be a hard sell for Level Up.
Opportunities – Massive Market Potential. The opportunities for mobile technology shopping are endless. One way to improve that system would be to improve the Level Up user interface. If users could easily track purchase history by location and item, Level Up could ‘suggest’ products from nearby businesses in much the same way that Amazon.com gives its suggestions. LevelUp should provide a search input feature so customers can type in their location and find out the stores that have offers in that area. Level Up can improve its brand recognition immensely. Not many of our group members had heard of the company before the project was assigned. Our age group should be the target market for this type of promotion. Level Up should advertise its security to retailers and other businesses. Level Up has proven to be very secure with users’ money. “So long cash and coins,” says one YouTube user.
Areas of Focus: ****Bars. College bars in the operating cities especially in Boston would be a good area of expansion.
Threats - similar companies who offer incentivized consuming. Stores will increasingly move towards programs like Level Up. Go Payment from Intuit is another payment method on the market that incorporates smartphone technology to allow scanning of credit cards and signing on the touch screens. There is proven value to allowing consumers to buy things using their mobile devices and undoubtedly there will be other programs like Level Up entering the market.
WORKS CITED 1.) Crowe, Rysman, and Stavins. “Mobile Payments in the United States at Retail Point of Sale: Current Markets and Future Prospects.” Federal