Is Groupon a Media company or a Discount Company?

May 13, 2011 | Irwin Hipsman
Is Groupon a Media company or a Discount Company?

I just read Joe Pulizzi of Junta 42’s blog post, "The Skinny on Groupon’s Content Strategy". Joe is one of the most thoughtful people in the field of content marketing. For those who use Brainshark for marketing, think about all of the content you deliver; whitepapers, web pages, webinars, testimonials, Brainshark presentations…. The one thing they have in common is the content has to be created by someone, shared with an audience and the utilization tracked.

Joe is making the case that Groupon is really a media company. For example, almost 10% of their 7,000 employees are in the editorial part of the operations. Meaning, they are actually writing, researching, designing, fact checking or editing the content their subscribers see. What separates them from competitors in the community discounting space  is their content. As an example, the service providers they promote are not involved in the content and have no right to edit the content shared with subscribers.

For authors of Brainshark presentations, the elements of the Groupon style will be of interest. The blog post goes into greater detail, but the most relevant is Show Don't Tell. Groupon writers work to create pictures with words like...Plush couches and velvet drapes swaddle patrons beneath Savior Lounge's 15 foot ceilings. Now, this may be a little much for your Brainshark presentation but it does speak to adding creativity to your script, slides and audio.

Groupon also has an 8 step content creation process. Step 6 is what they call voice edit or tone of voice for the message. For an excellent review of the concept of Tone of Voice, please view this 6-minute presentation by Aviva, a UK based insurance company. Their presentation, Tone of Voice,  was vote the Best Presentation in the 2010 Sharkie Awards competition:

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