01 May '11, 4am

Group buying sites boost e-commerce in Asia via @cmswire

SINGAPORE - INNOVATIVE 'group buying' sites offering bargains on everything from meals to travel packages are catching on in Asia as companies harness the power of social media to influence consumer behaviour. International brands and local merchants alike are exploiting the business model, which offers attractive deals with a catch - they have to be purchased by a minimum number of consumers within a deadline. The discount sites take out advertisements on Facebook and portals, send out Twitter messages and blast emails to their target market to promote particular deals. Consumers in turn ask family members and friends to take up an offer - so that they can eat in a group or relax in a spa together - and at the end of a successful promotion, discount sites get a cut from the vendors. 'It is basically about creating experience for the user,' said Patrick Linden, chief execu...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Money/Story/STIS...

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