American Express (Amex) have announced a recent technological development that will allow card customers to make purchases using twitter hashtags.
The new service which uses ‘Amex Sync’ allows customers to literally sync their credit cards with Twitter to enable them to use hashtags to purchase AmEx giftcards as-well as products from Amazon, Sony, Urban Zen and Xbox 360.
Amex Sync launched last March and has seen success though coupon-less discounts via specific Twitter hashtags.
So how does the new service work?
Here’s the 3 step process:
- Eligible AmEx cardholders (only certain cards may be used) post a tweet with the specified AmEx hashtag
- Cardholders then need to check for a reply from @AmerSync with a confirmation hashtag
- Cardholders must then tweet the confirmation hashtag within 15 minutes in order to confirm their purchase
Leslie Berland, American Express’s Senior Vice President of Digital Partnerships and Development, says that “based on the initial success of Amex Sync for offers, we know there is significant power in combining our assets with Twitter’s platform to bring value to Cardmembers and merchants. Now we’re leveraging our unique technology and closed-loop network to introduce a seamless solution that redefines what’s possible in the world of social commerce.”
In my opinion, using hashtags to purchase is the natural next step for social commerce and the twitter platform in particular. In-fact it’s not a new thing – Chirpify have been leading in this space for some time now, and the fact that a huge corporation like Amex have followed suite is a positive indicator of success rates. Interestingly, Chirpify have recently announced the addition of Instagram to their social commerce solution that offers purchases through just one reply via the word ‘buy’. I wonder which platform will be next to join the Chirpify solution…
I have to say, the AmEx process in it’s existing format is a bit clunky – and I predict teething problems with the 15 minute time limit to confirm purchase. This barrier could see a pretty big drop off. It will be interesting though to see how the service develops over time and what the take up rate is.
To learn more, you can watch the Amex Sync video here: