Four students from Bologna have created Influency, an app that allows you to get discounts based on the number of followers on social networks.
Cash, credit card, Paypal or check. These are the payment methods that we are used to using when purchasing a product or service, whether online or offline. In the next few years, however, more may be added. We’re not so much talking about Bitcoin or Libra – the phantom planetary currency launched by Marc Zuckerberg – but about a much more “social” way of payment: paying with your followers and getting discounts and free services in exchange for good social advertising. Four students of the University of Bologna – Emiliano Vannucci, Federico Papale, Giovanni Conti and Niccolò Bertelli – tried to anticipate the time by launching Influency, an app for smartphones available for Android and IOS. The pay-off for Influency is “Pay with your followers”. In essence, the app allows you to get discounts directly proportional to your follow-up on social media, Instagram in the first place.
Influency: the more followers you have, the less you pay!
A video published on the Influency app website explains how to get discounts or free services. Once you have downloaded the app, simply take a picture of the product (a t-shirt, a backpack, but also pizzas or cappuccinos) and upload it to Instagram. Once at the checkout, you will need to show the QR Code generated by the app to get “a discount proportional to the number of followers”. Obviously, the higher the number of followers, the greater the advantages. The “secret” of the Influency app is what the creators call “digital word-of-mouth” and that “allows affiliated entities to promote themselves in an innovative, effective and viral way and customers to enjoy benefits proportional to their number of followers on Instagram”. Influency can be used mainly for food and beverage but the founders also aim to exploit the app in the beauty sector, for example with hairdressers, or in the hospitality sector. At the moment, about 30 activities have started an agreement with the app in Bologna but the aim of the founders is “to expand the network, so as to assert ourselves among an increasingly diverse public and extend its use outside of our city”.