National Dance Day

If you’re working on channeling your choreographed energy into one superb 24-hour time frame, you might want to look into particpating in National Dance Day. An annual holiday put on by the Dizzy Feet Foundation, this year’s event was held on Saturday, July 28 at Grand Park in Los Angeles.

To celebrate, Groupon customer support representatives got together to strut their collective stuff. Rosie, the CS Dance Wrangler told us:

It was ridiculously fun and I was really happily overwhelmed with the positive response we got from the department.” Customer Service is hoping that the video will make an appearance on an upcoming episode of the television show So You Think You Can Dance!

Did you participate in National Dance Day?

Blogroll: Groupon Grassroots

Continuing the back to school theme, Groupon Grassroots, our philanthropic arm, rallies behind charities giving support to local educational organizations all this week. They also maintain a very active blog. Grassroots representative, Anna, takes time to tell us about it:

I am the campaign organizer for Grassroots campaigns that run in the Southwest. For instance, Tucson subscribers can help plant trees in Tucson’s school playgrounds through this week’s Grassroots campaign.

I also manage the blog at Grassroots, am developing a new community resource center for Grassroots community partners, and like the rest of our team, I help build out Groupon’s corporate responsibility in various ways since we are such a new program.

 

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Back to School Deals

To a child, what seems like an endless summer vacation is actually a typical three-month time period. Which is why the youth of today must return to school to re-learn the calendar every September. Here are some back to school deals to help these young minds transition from summer siesta to autumn academia easily:

Back 2 School Supply Bundle – Premade bundle with more than 90 back-to-school supplies ranging from pens and pencils to folders and notebooks.

Custom-Printed iPhone or iPad Case – Submit your own digital image or choose a ready-made graphic or monogram to be printed on an iPhone or iPad case.

iLuv Dual-Alarm Clock and Bed Shaker – This digital alarm clock signals the new day with tunes from your iPod and a vibrating shaker that wakes the deepest of sleepers.

12 Months of Online Meal Planning for School Lunches – Weekly shopping lists showcase flavorful, healthful recipes customized by store, diet, and price.

Rock n Learn Math and Language DVD Packages – Educational DVDs teach math and language skills with catchy music and animated characters.

As students once again return to the classroom, teachers can’t help but show off what they learned at their summer jobs. Here are the most popular summer jobs for temporarily unemployed teachers:

  • Beach cop
  • Courtroom sketch artist
  • Summer-school teacher
  • TV prankster
  • Summer-school principal
  • Haunted-house curator
  • Hilarious T-shirt maker
  • Fried-chicken-franchise owner/operator
  • Voice-over artist for the computer cartoon movies
  • Summer-school janitor

Are your children dreading or looking forward to the first day of school? How about you?


New GrouponWorks Site Live

Today we welcome merchants to check out and explore the newly-revamped GrouponWorks.com – our digital tour guide for business owners interested in learning how they can leverage the power of the Groupon brand, tools and solutions to work for them.

One of the key features of the site (it’s pretty hard to miss) is a video mosaic of merchant success stories—in their own words—that greets users upon arrival.

The videos on the opening page are only a small fraction of the hundreds of case studies and video testimonials on the site. These merchant stories are easily sortable by business type, topics of interest or geographical location in order to help users see relevant experiences applicable to them.

I highly recommend spending a few minutes watching some of the testimonials. One of my personal favorites is from Carolyn Franks the owner of Zoomars Petting Zoo in San Juan Capistrano, Calif.

Building Your Business with Groupon: ZOOMARS Petting Zoo from Groupon on Vimeo.

As you may have heard, we’re not just a daily deals company anymore. GrouponWorks.com highlights Groupon’s comprehensive suite of merchant products, services and resources in a sleek and understandable format. Some of these include: Groupon Featured Deals, Groupon Now!, real-time deals perfect for a few empty tables, Groupon Rewards, the easiest loyalty program available for merchants and Groupon Scheduler, an online appointment scheduling application.

Finally, GrouponWorks.com also showcases our merchant resources that help business owners get the most out of their Groupon experience, including the Groupon Merchant Center—an innovative dashboard providing customer insights, feedback and performance measurement across Groupon campaigns.

True to its name, the site shows how Groupon works for businesses.

Have you visited any of the businesses in our case study and video testimonial library? Do you have questions about our suite of merchant products, services, resources or the Groupon signup process? Let us know in the comments section below!

Groupon Blogroll: The People Blog

There are many voices heard in the halls of Groupon HQ, and one internet butterfly net used to capture the stories of employees is our People Blog, a one stop spot for all-things Groupon culture:

 I’m Dustin Carper and I’m the Employment Brand Strategist for Groupon. I look at my role as the marketing and PR side of recruiting and what it’s like to work here. I’ve always been interested in social from a personal standpoint, and have been diving into the world of social recruiting and employment branding over the past few years. Blogging is a good way to show (vs. tell) people what it’s like to work at Groupon and also gives employees a way to do the same.

What’s featured on your blog? Why would people want to visit it? Anything about the office life and ‘corporate’ world of Groupon is featured on the People Blog, from out recent dodgeball tournament to pictures of people’s desks that have been pranked to a weekly check-in with our interns. Anyone thinking about joining the Groupon team and employees alike would want to visit to see what’s going on around here.

What’s been your favorite story you’ve covered? We just started an Engineer spotlight and I’ve been really impressed so far. Sometimes I forget that we’re a pretty big company and reading these is a good reminder that our technology team is really impressive. Who would have known that we have someone who used to design software for monkeys? Also, it seems as though a lot of our engineers have started companies of their own before joining Groupon, so that’s fun to learn about. Desk of the Week is pretty fun, too.

Give it a read and let us know what you think!

Keep Summer Cool—the Groupon Way

Summer can be unbearable when you’re required to wear so many layers of clothing to protect your skin from the sun. That’s why this week we’re featuring refreshing deals to help keep you cool this time of year.

Melissa & Doug Water Toys Set  – Contrary to popular belief, humans need water to survive. This water toy set includes a sprinkler, bubble kit, spray bottle, and squirters with fun sea-creature designs for children to keep them properly hydrated on the outside.

Summer Frizz Total Solution Package or Hair Products – If the circumference of your hairdo increases with the temperature index, these natural hair products moisturize and protect curls or damaged locks.

Outdoor, Camping, and Traveling Gear – Fireflies and barbeque smells trigger one’s inner camping urge to surface. This online wilderness store stocks outdoor apparel, auto accessories, camping gear, fishing equipment and more.

Takeya Iced-Tea Pitcher and Tea – Brew flavorful teas and chill them in the same pitcher; includes pack of six flavors.

The mercury is rising across the country right now, and Groupon HQ is no exception. Fortunately, we’ve developed a few nontraditional means of beating Father Summer at his own game, such as:

  • Sitting on a throne of frozen peas
  • Wearing a suit made of garbage bags (the bags are filled with frozen peas)
  • Rubbing frozen peas on each other with such vigor as to cool the skin for hours and hours
  • Drinking plenty of water, chilled with a handful of frozen peas
  • Eating delicious peas (frozen)

Try any and all of these techniques to beat the heat at home—or better yet, check out our collection of temperature-defying summertime deals.

groupOn and buildOn

It’s not just the similar spelling that makes Groupon and buildOn a good pairing, though that does help when mnemonic devices prove unreliable. We’re working to encourage Voluntourism (i.e.,volunteer tourism) and Groupon Getaways is teaming up with our most successful Grassroots campaign – this time offering the chance to volunteer and build schools in Nepal or Nicaragua with The Amazing Race winners Ernie and Cindy!

Patty Huber, Manager of Groupon Grassroots:

The allure of voluntourism – exotic locations and new cultures, shared group experiences and the great feeling when making a difference – attracts new people to volunteering every day. In the same way that Groupon helps people discover new experiences, voluntourism helps people discover an untapped passion for service and often sparks a life-long commitment to serving others.

Getaways and Grassroots have partnered in the past to help transform communities. Back in April, Groupon Getaways sold out forty spots for two volunteering trips to Zambia with Spark Ventures. This summer’s campaign with buildOn allows an intimate group to travel to remote villages and construct schools for children without access to education. Additionally, for each trip purchased, buildOn will provide the same experience to an inner-city student from the U.S.

From buildOn’s blog:

We’re also excited to announce that Ernie Halvorsen and Cindy Chiang, winners of the 19th season of The Amazing Race, will accompany guests on the Nepal trip. “”Having traveled around the world and seeing the need to support developing areas, Cindy and I feel the best way to provide a better tomorrow is by supporting educational programs,” said Halvorsen.

Now you don’t have to be a character on Quantum Leap to getaway and change lives simultaneously. Visit Groupon Getaways or Groupon Grassroots for more opportunities!

 


Featured Merchant: Miami Salsa Driven

Today’s featured merchant post was guest authored by Stacey Caplan, Public Relations Intern:

Salsa dancing is a fun way to exercise and have fun with friends, which is why Oscar Ochoa, owner of Miami Salsa Driven, thought Groupon would be a great way to introduce his favorite cultural pastime to new customers and help grow his business. “Summer is our slow season, so we wanted to do something to spice things up and keep our studio full with customers,” Ochoa said. “Salsa classes are more fun when more people join us.”

When Groupon reached out to Miami Salsa Driven in the summer of 2011 to run, Oscar couldn’t have been more excited about running their first deal. “We were actually thinking about calling Groupon anyways, so we were happy that Groupon wanted to work with us,” he said. Their first deal ran in September 2011 and was a major success. In fact, Miami Salsa Driven has already run two more Groupon deals since.

According to Oscar, Groupon deals bring new faces to his salsa classes and new customer memberships. He estimates that 10-15 percent of customers that redeemed his second deal converted into full-time members. He also used Groupon Scheduler, which helps his employees forecast the number of customers attending classes, allowing them to plan and staff more efficiently.

Oscar is happy to use Groupon regularly as one of his primary marketing tools because he’s seen the great results it has helped to deliver for his business. His customers love his classes, and he enjoys sharing his passion with others. “If the customers are happy, then we are happy,” he said.

Deals to Keep Things Exciting

This summer, Groupon is offering up great deals to banish boredom. Take advantage before summer hibernation sets in.

If you live in Texas, try an Introductory Discovery Flight Package – Educational materials precede flight lesson led by FAA-certified instructors and would-be pilots are connected with area flight schools.

Things don’t just get boring in the US–Canada can partake in anti-boredom offers as well with Online Cooking Classes Led by “Top Chef” Contestants. With the help of contestants from this Emmy-award-winning cooking show, novice chefs can learn from over 200 online video lessons and recipes.

If you enjoy entertaining dinner guests, mixology, or dabble in mad scientistry, try the Molecule-R Gastronomy Kit or Cocktail Kit – Each kit contains 50 additive sachets, spoons, pipettes, and a recipe DVD to transform kitchens into interactive laboratories.

Commuting is more fun if it involves any amount of pep and/or zip. For those who prefer scooting to a destination, there’s a Greenbee Metro 2 Electric Motorcycle – After charging for up to 4.5 hours, this electric motorcycle transports riders without emitting harmful pollution or guzzling gas and oil.

Even when your brain feels bored, your body is still teeming with activity. Here’s a look at what your body is doing even when you’re not paying attention:

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Behind the Deals: Employee Passwords

Like all publicly traded companies, Groupon requires its employees to write their email password on a whiteboard in the reception area. Here are some of the entries you’d see if you walked into Groupon:

  • password
  • passworb
  • 123passworb
  • emailpassword
  • passwordpassword
  • PASSwor
  • SHHHpassword