Monday, May 09, 2011

Which came first: the chicken, or the chicks?

"Not the only chicken in the coop?" asks Anonymous@3:06 p.m. "It's true. Gannett's Deal Chicken, part of a flock of hundreds of Groupon wannabes, is not even the only chicken-themed contender."

There's online coupon service Gaggle of Chicks . . .

. . . vs. newly growing Deal Chicken:


  1. I've read that Deal Chicken launched in September 2010.

    On Gaggle of Chicks website, an FAQ says: "We launched in New York in August and are rolling out to major cities throughout the remainder of 2010 as well as in 2011."

  2. I've been watching the Deal Chicken home site for the last few weeks, and there has been no fresh developments. They operating in Pheonix, but not in all of these other cities.

  3. Deal Chicken may indeed be one of many Groupon copycats but, theoretically anyway, GCI's many papers, stations and their allied websites should give the company a powerful tool for achieving scale in a hurry. Theoretically, anyway . . .

  4. Local commerce sites take time to roll out as their very nature is Local Local Local. Started in Arizona.

  5. Everybody is making too big of a deal of the fact that Deal Chicken is a Groupon copycat. It's perfectly feasible to make a copycat product that is better than the original and to have more success than the originator of the idea.

    Notice that nobody here is doubting that Facebook will be able to make a go of it with its "deals" addition. After all, Facebook came after MySpace, but it now dominates the social media world.

    Gannett's real problem is that it's Deal Chicken product is being led by the same people who are leading USAT and the community papers. They aren't inventive or entrepreneurial. They're all about maximizing short-term profits.

    Facebook, on the other hand, is progressive and willing to take risks. Interestingly enough, that has resulted in both profitability in the short-term and the potential for profitability in the long-term.

  6. We got the big Deal Chicken announcement a week or two ago at my southern newspaper. However, we must 1. collect 5,000 email addresses to 2. qualify for additional marketing money that will help us collect the 15,0000 email addresses needed to launch the service. Apparently 15,000 is the minimum. Not sure if the targets are market specific or the same for each property.
    Meanwhile, coworkers check their daily Groupon emails, which contain a fair number of offers from small, local businesses in addition to chains (mostly restaurants).

  7. To be fair, Gaggle of Chicks is a ruddy awful brand name.

  8. Deal Chicken is a poorly formulated player in the crowded world of social media daily offers. Silly approach, not clever.

    I'm in Phoenix and have watched it from the beginning. The offers aren't as good, the writing isn't distinctive, and there are too many exclusions (i.e., no alcohol included on a dinner offer, while Groupon did the same restaurant a couple weeks later and there was no such restriction.)

    BUT, that being said, Gannett should have a HECK of an edge with the self-promotional opportunities in each market.

    But it won't go that way. Other markets wanted it until they got it; now they don't want it. They're a whiney spoiled bunch, these remaining publishers and ad directors/VPs.

    They don't want something "from Phoenix." They don't want something "from corporate." They don't want anyone telling them what to do.

    Like all Gannett markets, they will refuse to learn from the Phoenix experience and roll out the templated version as "suggested" (it should just be mandated.) They'll say in whiney little voices, "My market is different," and re-invent the whole thing. They'll refuse to use promotional inches for it, and many will lie about it.

    And in the process they'll lose ALL the advantages of being delivered an already-invented wheel. They'll decide the wheel should be square in THEIR market.

    Now what should happen is Bob Dickey should say, here's what you are going to do, publishers, JUMP. And the publishers should say, How high?

    That's how business works. But Gannett is still pussyfooting around with its coddling of local markets, etc.

    It's a shame. It has happened with so many things. Someone needs to be put in charge that will TAKE charge.

    Otherwise, I wish someone would just put this company out of its misery. The death throes are loud, redundant and unnecessary.

  9. 8:09
    Are you kidding? There is no local control here. Gannett Digital is managing this whole thing. Sounds like you are looking to blame the local markets if this thing fails. It will fail because it is too little too late.

  10. 8:26 -- I was thinking the same thing. If there is one thing that has ruined our newspapers, it's that corporate has demanded (for years) that papers in vastly different markets operate exactly the same. That sucks the local flavor out of the publications and ultimately kills them.

  11. Here's the problem with being late-to-market with a copycat product: The innovators don't just sit around and wait for you to catch up. They're already moving on.

    Groupon has moved into concert and event ticketing.

    Groupon is rolling out a mobile product that will give you multiple offers based on where you are located.

    Meanwhile, Deal Chicken is still scurrying to catch up with Groupon's original deal-a-day email concept.

    Innovation is a race the tortoise never wins.

  12. By the way, please don't confuse this "Moms Like Me Discounts & Deals" email with anything that you might possibly eventually be getting from Deal Chicken....

  13. @12:02

    You mean like Myspace versus Facebook?
    Wasn't Myspace first?
    I think the tortoise can win, sometimes.
    But which chicken was the first to cross the road?
    And was she carrying a coupon?

  14. 2:36 A case could be made that a third company, Friendster, actually came first. But it didn't make the cut because it was undercapitalized; it's now a social gaming site.


Jim says: "Proceed with caution; this is a free-for-all comment zone. I try to correct or clarify incorrect information. But I can't catch everything. Please keep your posts focused on Gannett and media-related subjects. Note that I occasionally review comments in advance, to reject inappropriate ones. And I ignore hostile posters, and recommend you do, too."

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.