Meredith Partners With Kiip for Branded In-App Rewards

Mobile startup shifts focus to rewarding everyday activities

Rewards-based mobile ad startup Kiip has signed its first major media client, Meredith Corp., as the platform expands its focus outside of gaming. The mass women's magazine publisher and broadcaster will use Kiip to offer consumer rewards like coupons or product samples on its AllRecipes Dinner Spinner and Better Homes and Gardens’ Must-Have Recipes apps. 

Since launching three years ago, Kiip has become best known for its in-game rewards. But Kiip and its ilk have been threatened by Google, Facebook and Twitter, with their growing mobile ad footprint. More recently, Kiip has shifted its focus to offering rewards for other, non-game activities, like logging a workout to creating a new playlist. In the case of Meredith’s apps, these activities could be bookmarking a recipe or making a grocery-shopping list.

Such moment-based rewards allow brands to more precisely target consumers, Kiip CEO Brian Wong said. For instance, a person who bookmarks a recipe for quinoa could receive an offer from Quaker for a healthy snack sample, while someone who adds the ingredients for a pasta recipe to their shopping list might get a coupon for Ragu.

“Kiip has been on this rapid growth curve in understanding how we can become part of peoples' daily lives, and food and recipes has been a huge part of this,” said Wong. “A lot of brands are spending a lot of money trying to target moms and women, and Meredith being at the core of that [audience], we thought that it was very appropriate to partner with them and their properties. We’re creating a new way for their advertisers to connect with consumers beyond just an ad.”

Redemption rates for these sorts of rewards are higher than those for in-game or achievement-based rewards, Wong said. Redemption rates in recipe apps, for example, have been as high as 22 percent, versus 10 to 12 percent for games. “In a game, you’re kind of mind-numb, often just killing time. But in a recipe app, you’re constantly thinking and your consciousness is much higher, so the rates are naturally higher,” he said.

For now, Kiip rewards will be available only in Meredith's aforementioned apps, but the media company plans to expand the software to other magazine-branded apps.

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