You would not agree that Starbucks could serve you the best coffee of the world, but definitely it is one of the best cafe shop embracing some new ideas, e.g. social media. With the partnership with Foursquare in U.S. , yesterday, together with Jiepang, the leading Chinese check-in service, Starbucks (Shanghai) announced an interesting campaign, Check-in your Chrismas at Starbucks.
Started from 9th November till 23rd December, all Jiepang’s users who check-in at any Starbucks cafe in Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces would be awarded a virtual Starbucks badge and the opportunities to win a set of limited edition Starbucks Xmas Crystal Ball. If lucky enough, the check-in users could also win HTC phones and Starbucks 2010 laptops. According to the Digital Marketing director of Starbucks Shanghai, 189 Starbucks (~40% of Starbucks in total) in Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces will participate this campaign, which is expected to boost the check-in market in China.
Jiepang, a startup launched at 13rd, May this year and driven by a young and passionate post-80s team, has quickly became the leading location-based service in China. Although Jiepang is still small with around 150k users and 1,500-2,000 new users per day (according to David Liu, CEO of Jiepang), it has built up good partnership with cool brands like Nike, HP, HTC etc and is very active in various events such as music festivals to provide check-in service.
With no exception, in China, Jiepang is facing a tough competition from a couple of Foursquare-likers including e.g. RenRen the leading social network, Dianpin the very popular Yelp-like service and startups like Play4f, K.ai, Linxun etc. So how to stand out in the crowded market, David said, Jiepang would focus on location-centric social networking. It positions itself as a tool for social communications, not just a game for fun; it is not to compete with other social networks or yelp-like service, instead, it could be the best and more efficient tool to synchronize people’s real life with their virtual social networks with better and cool location-awareness.