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The Kroger Co. is dialing up a new way to offer customers coupons through their wireless devices via a new partnership with Cellfire, Inc., a national mobile coupon and discount offer service provider.
The chain will offer the new service at the 216 stores in its Atlanta division, which comprises Georgia, South Carolina, eastern Tennessee, and Alabama. Major consumer brands that will offer coupons include Clorox, ConAgra, Del Monte, General Mills, Kimberly-Clark, and Unilever.
To use the service, customers must first link their mobile number to their Kroger Plus savings card. Customers then select coupons from Cellfire.com via their phone and load the coupons to their savings cards. The coupons are automatically applied at checkout with use of the savings card, and are deleted from the queue after use.
"We're constantly seeking new innovations to provide our customers with more ways to save," said Glynn Jenkins, spokesman for Kroger's Atlanta division. "With Cellfire, the ability to access grocery coupons using their cell phone helps our customers to save both time and money, resulting in a satisfying shopping experience that truly delivers on our 'customer first' promise."
Advertisers have been slow to embrace online coupons due to fraud and security concerns, but with Cellfire mobile coupons, fraud and mal-redemption is less likely because redemption occurs digitally in a closed loop. Advertisers also have complete control and can quickly present new coupons based on prior offer performance, and can also gain unique shopper insight from aggregated redemption data that's not available via other coupon distribution channels, allowing them to better serve consumers.
"Mobile couponing is a winning initiative for us. Cell phones are always with the consumer and association with the grocer savings card makes it simple and convenient," said Karl Schmidt, director of promotional marketing at General Mills. "Plus mobile is an exciting new medium that extends our reach and influence to a younger generation of shoppers who are less inclined to clip coupons from newspapers, circulars, or direct mail."
Kroger consumers can visit Cellfire.com or send a text message with the keyword KROGER to 22888 to receive instructions on how to access the offers on their phone. New grocery offers will be available on Cellfire every two weeks.