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American Express and Twitter partner to sell you deals via hashtags

american express and twitter partner
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Twitter, thanks to some heavy lifting from American Express, has taken the next step into becoming a platform for online shopping, or as we see it a daily deals site.

Twitter will start accepting your American Express card for purchases that include items like gift cards, Kindle Fire tablets, and Xboxes. Twitter’s president of global brand strategy tells the Wall Street Journal that Twitter is “convinced that commerce is going to be one of the areas (for which) advertisers are going to start using our platform.” This isn’t Twitter’s first partnership with American Express: Last year the two platforms buddied up to sell coupons within tweets.

amex gift card from twitter
Image used with permission by copyright holder

To make a purchase, users will be required to use special hashtags. For instance if you tweet #BuyAmexGiftCard25 you’ll be responding to Amex’s tweet on its Twitter page that’s offering a $25 Amex gift card for $15 and purchasing the card. Amex will reply with a confirmation hashtag, and you’ll have 15 minutes to respond to confirm the purchase. It’s worth mentioning that the type of shipping offered will be two day shipping, and it’s free.

An Amex spokesperson from American Express tells us that the sales will start February 13 at 12 PM EST. Among the items that are up for grabs (until they sell out) include the following:

  • $25 American Express Gift Card: $15.00.
  • Amazon Kindle Fire HD: $149.99 plus tax.
  • Sony Action Cam & Waterproof Headband Mount: $179.99 plus tax.
  • Urban Zen Bracelet Designed by Donna Karan: $80.00 plus tax.
  • Xbox 360 4GB console with a 3-month Xbox LIVE Subscription and 2 game tokens: $179.99 plus tax.
  • Xbox Controller: $29.99 plus tax.

Note that American Express is the one offering the deals and products, and using Twitter as a platform. For Twitter, this partnership is an experiment to see how e-commerce stands up to the consumers. We’re assuming here that Twitter will take a cut of the purchases that Amex sells, but since we can’t be certain we’ve reached out to Amex and Twitter to confirm this. Tweet-to-buy systems aren’t all new to Twitter, however. Chirpify has been using the platform for its hashtagged purchasing service for over a year now.

Now the question is, where is the incentive for a user to want to make a purchase on Twitter when daily deals sites and e-commerce sites are arguably better suited to pushing products? Social gifting has been a struggle for Facebook, which has said the feature is not a focus for the network. 

Amex and Twitter’s partnership looks more like a daily deals offering than Facebook Gifts, however. The first batch of items that Amex will be selling are all enjoying reduced prices, like you might find from Groupon Goods; the Kindle HD for instance is marked off by 25 percent from its $199 retail price, and Sony’s Action Cam retails for $179.99 but the Twitter deal throws in a $29.99 headmount for free. Plus, these deals have an expiration date: The first batch of sales expires by March 3, 2013 (or until these items sell out).

To find out more about this partnership you can check out the video below.

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