96: How Giftagram Takes The Stress Out Of Buying Gifts, But is Keeping The Personal Touch

Aug 26, 2016

In every corner of the world, one thing we all have in common with each other is we all give gifts to friends, loved ones, colleagues, or someone we just want to send a nice thought to. I recently came across a company called Giftagram. They have a simple plan. You pick up your phone and send a gift on demand anywhere from your Smartphone or Tablet. Essentially they want to make sending a gift as easy as ordering an Uber. You don’t even have to worry about a delivery address. The CEO and founder, Jason Reid, is here to discuss more about this concept and how it works.

Can you tell the listeners a little more about you and what you do?

I’m Jason Reid; I’m the co-founder and CEO of Giftagram. Giftagram is essentially bringing back the timeless act of gift giving. So many of us today have lost touch with that very powerful and often emotional act of sending someone or bringing someone a physical gift. Many people have defaulted to sending a text or email, buying someone a gift card, or posting on their Facebook wall. All of which are nice gestures but we wanted to make it really easy and fun to send a thoughtful physical gift to someone, and we thought a mobile app or platform to enable that would be an excellent way to do so.

Jason Reid

How does Giftagram work?

The app is available for both IOS and Android. We’re a mobile-first business. Part of why we built it mobile first was first of all when we were launching in 2013 there was a huge shift towards mobile commerce. Gifting is such a personal thing that mobile just made a ton of sense. In the Giftagram app, we integrate with all of your contacts which allow us to remind you when someone’s birthday is coming up. You can send something to someone in under 30 seconds. You just select the product and select the contact in your address book, and one of the unique features is you don’t need the physical address. As long as you have their mobile number or email you can send them the Giftagram notification. They would click on a link which would mostly say “Hi Neil Jason sent you a gift. Tell us where you would like it delivered.”  Once the recipient puts in their preferred delivery address, the order gets processed by one of our 200 retail or vendor partners who send it via courier, and it usually arrives in 3-5 days.

What kind of gifts would I find on the app?

We initially launched in Toronto with some really cool local vendors and merchants. That included everything from a local massage place to ping pong to local cupcake places and other retailers. Very quickly we started to get requests from some of the top retail brands in Canada. There is very much a theme around quality, best in class and well-designed products. We have some fun quirky products as well. Prices range from $20 to $2,000.

Are you going after a particular market or just everyone?

Our primary users are nearly evenly split between men and women. Typically they are in urban centers in Canada. When we launched in the United States in November last year the focus was very much on professionals. Typically folks working in sales and marketing roles have been very frequent users of the app. There is also the corporate element using it to stay in touch with customers and prospects.

Can you share about any new features or plans on the horizon or are they under wraps at the moment?

We do generally keep them tightly under wraps. One of the ones I’ll mention briefly is we’re looking to integrate an in-app chat feature which will be using bot type technology.  That’s a feature we expect to role out in the next couple months. There are several more coming out that we’ve been working on for the past several months.

What’s the coolest gift you have seen on Giftagram that you would like somebody to send you?

There are so many attractive offers, and we’re always adding new products to the app. For myself, we’re not set up for it in Canada, but in the U.S we’re able to send alcohol. That’s always a fun gift. We have bottles of wine bundled together with other merchandise. The others ones I enjoy receiving and I’m always giving are unique experiences such as a dining experience or massage or manicure/pedicure. Those always go over well. I think people generally use those and we have some tremendous local partners. Being able to find that really cool restaurant in New York or Toronto or L.A whether you are from there or not Giftagram does that work for you. Being able to choose gifts that are unique to where that recipient lives is pretty cool and is one of the elements that makes us unique.

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