Launched in 2009, the social networking
app Foursquare was hailed as providing a cutting-edge approach for users to
share their location with friends. Called a “check-in,” people would reveal
their location through their mobile device by selecting the venue they were
frequenting at that time.
The app grew immensely popular as users
around the world accumulated points for spending time at their favorite
retailers, restaurants, nightclubs, libraries or other venues. But the excitement around
this movement soon abated as users began to realize that there was no utility
around the points they had collected.
Now there’s a
startup called FlipNpik that’s offering a new approach to this idea. This collaborative
social media platform, dedicated to local businesses and connected to
blockchain technology, allows users to monetize their social media engagement
through a decentralized network where value is created and equitably
distributed among FlipNpik’s community.
behind the company’s creation were concerns on the part of small- to
medium-sized businesses, particularly local ones, regarding the dominance of
major advertising players like Facebook offering few promotional options to
small enterprises with a limited budget. Predicated on the cultivation of
mutually beneficial relationships, FlipNpik provides a robust setting for small
businesses and community users to actively engage with one another in
Through the use
of FlipNpik’s creatively designed platform, businesses are able to obtain
visibility and promotional buzz through the use of tools that allow them to
compete with much larger advertising chains that have budgets that give them a
major strategic advantage.
Consumers, by way
of FlipNpiks’ participatory model, are able to tap into monetary incentives
tied to their social media posts that show support for their favorite places.
These users can also participate in various other incentive-based activities
such as adding new businesses to the app or by becoming an “Ambassador
In return for
these activities, active users receive Flip Social, a reward system designed to
attract and retain users of the platform through various incentives and
promotions. Users can either use their Flip Social to get promotions, to play
on the app or can convert it into the FlipNpik token. If they wish to have more
active roles and serve a specific business, they can also become “Ambassador
Partners” and gain 20 percent of the business spending on the app.
efforts to promote the democratization, collaboration and fair and
equitable sharing of value creation with its community are fueled by “The
FlipNpik” (FNP), a utility token, distributed and identified on the
blockchain-based financial platform Stellar. Company leaders believe that
Stellar is ideal for its project, given the platform’s ability to support high-volume
microtransactions cost effectively and at high speeds.
Page to the Journey Ahead
has operated in Canada since 2016 and in Europe since 2017, has witnessed a
steady trajectory in the development of its model. Unlike scores of blockchain
projects still in conceptual development, FlipNpik already has a viable
product. The FlipNpik mobile app is available on iOS and Android, and its
technology has been released in over a half-dozen countries including England,
Switzerland, Ireland, France, Canada and Singapore.
Foursquare and social media titans such as Facebook and Instagram continue to
be part of the same competitive landscape, FlipNpik is arguably the first
platform to remunerate users for their social engagements.
“My main desire is to help small
businesses succeed,” CEO Henri Harland said. “Social media has now become
almost indispensable for all businesses if they want customers. But while they
have to promote themselves and be seen, they often can’t keep up and compete
with giant retailers who have unlimited resources.”
Harland added that FlipNpik aims to solve
this inequitable state in the social media world by allowing small local
businesses to have an ecosystem dedicated to them, one where all users are able
to obtain remuneration for their social engagements.
“We believe that with the power of the
masses, small businesses will stand a chance to stay in the game and all users
will finally be remunerated for their actions on social media,” he said.
Harland cited inbound marketing as the
underlying trend behind FlipNpik, one where consumers are attracted through
relevant and helpful quality content shared through channels like blogs and
search engines. He said that these very consumers are no longer interested in
traditional advertisements, preferring peer-to-peer recommendations.
“To be enticed by a brand or attracted to
a product, the consumer must have access to instructive, entertaining and
personalized content shared by a trusted source,” Harland said. “And that’s how
FlipNpik was designed — by rewarding and remunerating the community to
build business content and pages and share it with their friends and family.”
“We have made an unconventional but
democratic move by opening the private sale to the public,” Harland explained.
“We have offered bonuses that are generally only offered during the private
sale phase of the ICO to anyone who can spend a minimum of $100, leveling the
playing field for the small investor. To date we have raised $2.5 million in
the private sale.”
Ultimately, it is all an effort to drive
the project’s long-term vision.
“FlipNpik aims to become the first
collaborative commercial social media platform to allow users to monetize their
social media engagements,” Harland said. “In the next 12 to 18 months, we
envision FlipNpik as the reference for consumers seeking to find small local
businesses in their neighborhoods as well as inscribe and recommend new
businesses to their peers. We are also excited about it becoming a reference
for tourists worldwide seeking to find businesses recommended by locals.”
and investing in digital assets is speculative and can be high risk. Based on
the shifting business and regulatory environment of such a new industry, this
content should not be considered investment or legal advice.