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Daily Dose of iQ: Swirl Gives Mobile Coupons to Shoppers Who Disclose Shopping Data

We often blog about the newfangled ways retailers and third-party apps try to obtain real-time shopper data in stores. Inevitably, this type of data collection comes at the expense of consumer privacy.

Swirl currently offers this service in Kenneth Cole and Timberland stores in Boston and New York.

Now, a Boston-based startup called Swirl is offering a new incentive: discounts (via smartphone) to shoppers who opt in to letting stores spy on them. "Swirl is the brainchild of an Ankara, Turkey-native, Hilmi Ozguc, with a great entrepreneurial track record," wrote Forbes' Peter Cohan.

"Consumers who opt-in will get, say, a text delivered to their smartphone as they walk by the department that sells the item," Ogzuc explained in an interview.

So far, Swirl has been offering this service in Kenneth Cole and Timberland stores in Boston and New York.

It will be interesting to see how many shoppers actually opt in for Swirl.

"Swirl will deliver the shopper in Kenneth Cole stores, say, a $50 discount for purchase over $150 or 35% off any item over $100 in merchandise bought at Timberland. But each offer is exclusive and unique to that consumer — for example, if she has already bought shoes, it would make her an offer on a jacket," according to Ozguc.

Swirl is still new and Ozguc remains hazy on revenue and adoption details, but it will be interesting to see how many shoppers actually opt in for this service.

Date: 
July/10, 2013