What is Luvocracy?
At first glance Luvocracy has received some fabulous reviews and looks perfectly poised to finally offer some form of direct ROI for businesses. This is a social platform that will support sales and is of benefit to those brands that are socially active and excel in customer service, relations and operations.
A great experience will generate a value for money and a positive angle for any brand. So in essence, by ensuring your buying process is a friendly and logistical approach, then your customers may multiply as a result of the buying experience being seamless and enjoyable. Word of mouth certainly is a trusted source, and surprisingly one businesses often find the toughest to master!
“We are building a new marketplace around the explosion in social sharing. We do that by creating a way for people to buy recommendations from people whose taste they trust. And we build that into an economy by allowing everyone to participate in the value that they create.”
What we can see developing here is a new wave of incentivized purchasing and a new science behind social media, one that can finally be accountable for spend and one more direct than offering referrals or site traffic – in return this can result in the buying decision being far closer in the buying pipeline; This platform is designed behind the traditions (is it okay to say that this early in the life-span of social media?) of social marketing, being one that provokes emotion where peers influence your decisions. Members find the best things to buy, meet people through the products they recommend, and give and receive gifts with every purchase.
Similar to twitter in that you only follow whom you find interesting, whom you follow on Luvocracy refers to personal taste and will instantly influence the products that are marketed to you, these people are known as influencers. By telling the platform which social sharers you trust and follow, they can make assumptions on what you will react to. With the desire to achieve an endless circle of recommendations and growing social circles, if successful, this platform could become vital to brands that continue to make waves online. But much like the recent controversial demise of paid-for advertising, is it only a matter of time before these feeds and recommendations become clogged up, spammed and less personal?
Much like Pinterest, you begin to create collections that you love, the equivalent to pin boards. The buying cycle doesn’t end at purchasing though, each time you buy something, you get the chance to thank the person who made the recommendation and that person earns rewards for helping. Earn rewards when people buy what you recommend, even if someone else passed along your recommendation.
So what has been the inspiration behind start-up Luvocracy?
“People flock to Pinterest to collect and keep track of inspirations, whether they're recipes to cook, destinations to visit or clothes to wear. But there's a promising new social network with a similar model focused less on dreaming and more on shopping. San Francisco-based start-up Luvocracy, which launched quietly last fall, is based around the concept that we buy products more when others recommend them. And since 92% of consumers trust word of mouth over any form of advertising, according to Nielsen, it's a smart strategy for a company to embrace.”
Here's how the site really works: Similar to pinning on Pinterest, users can collect looks and products and essentially, pin them. They can also re-pin from friends, brands and tastemakers, which Luvocracy defines as bloggers, editors and stylists. Meanwhile, when members comes across items on the web from any retailer that they want to post to a board, they can do so via the downloadable Luvocracy plug-in. Again, following suit from the ‘pin-it’ button.
"We wanted to build a platform where you could see products recommended from everyone you trust in one place, so you can sift through it like a personalized catalogue," Christine Martinez, creative director of Luvocracy, told Mashable. "You can showcase what you discover too or put it in your 'backroom,' which is only visible to you."
A feature that I particularly like is that, if a product is not readily available for purchase, it will not show. This deviates from the constant disappointment you find on other social sites when often appealing links click-through to something completely different or out-of-stock. Hopefully this will keep the platform ‘clean and tidy’.
After purchase, the site then rewards users with a small percentage of money back if someone makes a purchase after buying one of your recommended products. Although it might take awhile to see any real reimbursement, it's certainly possible for those with a large following to rake in some side cash (or a new wardrobe). The design of the site is also clean, organised and sleek — free from clutter and easy on the eyes. A welcomed change!
Although it is not known how many users are on the site, membership looks to be growing. Albeit a good model, big brands are already beginning to realise the potential earnings of social recommendations and the likes of Amazon, Tesco and Argos are already on the verge of implementing their own white label systems through a platform called ‘Shopa’. Although at first it sounds threatening, Luvocracy may be the solution for smaller brands with smaller budgets. The big brands may shove the importance of social into the spotlight.
So could Luvocracy be the new Pinterest but a more polished model with businesses at the heart? It depends on what you want from both sites. If you're looking for inspirations and ideas to spark creativity, Pinterest is your best bet. If you're looking for products to buy, Luvocracy's e-commerce abilities are seamless and an easy, integrated way to advance…
Content Assistant - Jack Cooper - @Coop_ATTACK