Givingli recently partnered with Blackhawk Network as their eGift Technology Provider; in this short QnA, Nicole Emrani Green, CEO and Co-Founder, Givingli and Betty Weinkle, Director of Partnerships, Blackhawk Network talk about the fintech connection in modern consumption patterns:
Nicole Emrani Green, CEO and Co-Founder, Givingli:
What does the future of gifting look like to you, Nicole?
The practice of gifting isn’t going anywhere, it’s just evolving. In fact, meaningful connection is more important and more desired than ever, in today’s fast-paced world. Modern consumers want more flexible options and the ability to express themselves through gifting. Today, we can all order groceries, get a car, or hire someone to walk our dog from our phone, and we believe gifting should be that easy. With the friction of traditional gifting removed, we are seeing people sending gifts for more everyday events, not just for birthdays, weddings, and baby showers. Givingli users are utilizing the platform to send gifts just because, a new pet, or simply to say ‘I miss you.’ This shift is indicative of the generational shift in communication and I think it’s here to stay.”
What are some gifting trends among modern consumers that leverage fintech?
We leverage fintech to give modern consumers the instant gratification of sending a gift that can be redeemed right away by the recipient. That type of speed in a digital experience wouldn’t be possible without the powerful and secure transaction protocols Givingli is built on and through our partners
Betty Weinkle, Director of Partnerships, Blackhawk Network
Betty, a few thoughts on what is driving the increasing demand for digital gifting today?
Online and mobile shopping habits spread quickly when social distancing was introduced during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, digital gifting emerged as a multigenerational lifeline—evident by unprecedented growth last year and likely continuing in 2021. For instance, based on Blackhawk Network’s partners’ sales data, gift cards sold directly from a restaurant or merchant’s own website as of mid-March 2020 were up 92% from the previous year. The rapid adoption of all things digital has driven more consumers to explore payment and gifting options that, pre-COVID, would have been outside of their comfort zone. Now, more than ever before, consumers are embracing digital lifestyles—and digital gifting options.
What differentiates what Givingli and Blackhawk are doing to reach an untapped consumer vertical?
Technology, mobile lifestyles and an increasing demand for contactless payment options are paving the way for gifting innovation. Together, Givingli and Blackhawk provide end users with a one-two punch that delivers popular egift options quickly and conveniently with an added personal touch from Givingli’s unique greetings and flexible personalization features. For businesses looking to stand out, it’s not just about offering digital gifting options—it’s about offering options that connect people from afar since so many cannot connect in person, and doing so in a way that’s meaningful, simple, and impactful. Our collaborative solution checks all these boxes and provides increasingly digital-savvy shoppers with a wide array of versatile digital gifting options for every occasion or just because.
Why is digital gifting so effective in capturing new customers now?
U.S. ecommerce sales were expected to climb by 18% in 2020 and Blackhawk’s research found nearly 90% of people surveyed are using some kind of digital wallet. It’s clear the widespread adoption of digital payments—including eGifts—is here to stay. Smart businesses realize that like digital payment options, digital gifting options open up communication channels with new audiences that increasingly rely on their virtual lifestyles or are now part of the digital ecosystem. Digital touchpoints enable businesses to learn more about their customers over time, creating more opportunities for personalization, driving loyalty, opening cross- and up-selling opportunities and informing more tailored promotions. These insights are invaluable in capturing new customers in addition to boosting engagement with existing ones.
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