Social Currency


Getting Marc Jacobs products without any money seems like a dream. This dream came true in February 2014, when Marc Jacobs opened the Daisy Marc Jacobs Tweet Shop in Manhattan. Unlike regular stores, this store does not accept money, instead you pay with tweets. When you tweet with #MJDaisyChain you get credits which can be traded for Marc Jacobs products such as necklaces and perfumes. Tweets with pictures will give you more credits and the person with the best picture of the day even gets a Marc Jacobs handbag! This pop-up store was only open for three days, one of the reasons social media exploded with #MJDaisyChain.

Another example of social media as currency is Pay with a Tweet, a site that says they are the manager between company and customer. As a company you can register your company for a Pay with a Tweet campaign. When you are a customer and click on the Pay with a Tweet button you are paying your product with a positive tweet about the company.

Social currency is not limited to Twitter, liking or sharing on Facebook can also provide you with products. You might wonder what the value is of a tweet or a like. There is no simple answer to that question. However, analytic research shows that a like on Facebook has a bigger value than a tweet. One reason for this difference in value is, that on Facebook you have friends and on Twitter you have followers. You have met most of your friends on Facebook in real life, but you have never met many of your followers. You will probably take advice more quickly from someone you know in person than someone you have never met before.

Both Marc Jacobs pop-up store and the Pay with a Tweet website seem to have advantages for customer and company, but does this win-win situation seem too good to be true? In my opinion the credibility of all reviews in social media will drop, because you do not know when people are rewarded for their reviews. What do you think the consequences are when social currency increases and do you think it is fair that the value of likes and tweets is different?



3 thoughts on “Social Currency

  1. I think the effect of social currency will be limited since a company will never be able to give a lot for free for a long period of time. The advantages for the customer outweigh that of the company in most cases (unless we’re talking about a popular blogger advertising a brand). You mentioned the Marc Jacobs pop-up store was only open for 3 days: there will never be high-end shops that can do this all the time. In other words: I believe this phenomena will pop-up now and again, but social currency will never become a legit payment method. On the other hand, I think it’s a great temporal way of advertising a brand and creating a spike in new customers! It drives people to get talking about the brand on social media.

    I do not completely understand why a like is worth more than a tweet. Taking clothing as an example, I do not particularly take more advice from someone I know in person than a stranger about fashion choices.

  2. What an interesting post! I never knew that you could actually get things for free by simply tweeting about the product or by liking a post or a picture on Facebook. I think that this is a way companies can get a lot of brand awareness in a fairly short amount of time.

    I do however wonder about the quantities of tweets one has to send out in order to get the product for free. But, as you mentioned, the value of a tweet or a Facebook post, is not clear yet.

    I look at the Facebook vs Twitter value difference in another way. When using Twitter, one can tweet as often as one would like using the #MJDaisyChain, whereas on Facebook it is only possible to like or share a post once. Therefore, if the tweet vs like value would be equal, one can get more credits using twitter. To even this out, I think, they’ve created the value difference, which is fair according to my reasoning.

    I think that the way you propose the concept of social currency, where one can get products for free by simply tweeting about the product, is too good to be true. However, I do think that in can work in other ways. For example, in America one can weigh in on the results of NBC’s TV-program ‘The Voice’ by tweeting about the show using a hashtag ‘#VoiceSave’ followed by the candidate’s name they want to see in the next round. This is free, instead of the text or call method where you need to pay in order to cast your vote. This concept is in a way a form of Pay with a Tweet.

  3. I know friends who ‘entered’ in this tweeting phenomena and I remember my Twitter Timeline being filled with the hashtag. To me it seems like a Social Media stunt, since social media can make or break you as a company. Since Marc Jacobs can be out of budget for you, it is a great way to get in touch with everyone and to stand out. I will not be surprised if other brands start doing it. But as LisaS says, a brand – no matter how much money they have – can never do this too long. I also think it needs to be special.

    With this in mind I don’t think that social currency will keep increasing. It is like a hype and eventually it will pass. But one of the consequences of – for example – paying with a tweet instead of actually buying something, is that Tweeting is not for fun anymore. People will start spamming, there is no conversation. For Facebook it is different, since you like pictures from friends. For that I don’t think you can really compare a like and a tweet since they have different purposes.

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