The program works like this: The retailer gives teen prom reps who sign up at the site an identification number and then offers a 10 percent discount for every referral that produces a tuxedo rental. If the reps bring in 10 referrals, they get a free rental. The referral customers themselves get $20 off of their rental if they provide their prom rep’s ID number.
According to a Business Week article:
“Matt Schow, director of online marketing at Men’s Wearhouse, Houston, said the site has resulted in a 689 percent week-over week improvement compared to 2008 for registered prom rep sign ups…
Schow pointed out that the mini-site connected social media with local stores. When the rep finishes a permission-based registration, he said, the closest store gets notified that it’s gained another lead generator to keep on file. At that juncture, the store contacts the new rep and invites them in to pick up their prom rep materials.”
The concept of avatars is certainly alive and well and given the audience’s warmth to virtual communities, i.e. Gaia Online, this works well. Definitely check it out if you have a moment, the demo is addicting!