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New York Times expands mobile wallet opportunities for podcast series

Modern Love is a new podcast from the publication in which celebrities read fan-submitted stories, all related to love. The New York Times is incorporating mobile wallet into its strategy, eliminating the need for fans to have to download another application and also serve them extra content. 

"Wallet is just not about payments," said Judy Chan, senior product marketing manager at Urban Airship, the developer behind the campaign. "It is about convenience and serving your customers on mobile. 

"The true value in mobile wallets lies in its ability to serve as loyalty cards, coupons, tickets, reminders, information cards, etc, all stored seamlessly within the Apple Wallet or Android Pay ecosystem," she said. "The best part is that it does not require the customer to download any branded app. 

"As Modern Love Podcast has shown, mobile wallets can be used in ways that are non-retailer centric. What NYT and WBUR are doing with mobile wallet is a great example of recognizing mobile wallet as a marketing and customer engagement platform."

Mobile Modern Love

Mobile users who have added the pass to a wallet will receive voicemails from celebrities announcing the weeks? podcast. Each podcast is read by a celebrity who will record the corresponding voicemail. 

The most recent voicemail features actor Michael Shannon advertising his podcast episode saying ? I am on this week?s Modern Love podcast and it is a good one, a really good one, You should check it out, thanks for listening.? Other celebrities who have recorded essay readings and voicemails include actresses Dakota Fanning, Patina Miller and producer Judd Apatow. 

The voicemails are all congregated on SoundCloud and the podcasts are available on whatever platform mobile users prefer to download. Users can also click info on the pass for content related to the podcast, which provides a feed for various links such as direction to download and the various celebrity voicemails. 

Mobile wallets 
For Apple users, the link takes them directly to iTunes to download the podcast, making it easier for listeners. The new use of mobile wallets show the extended potential not just for commerce, but for a wide range of consumer behaviors. 

The New York Times' use of the mobile wallet will remind and encourage users to continue to listen, without multiple apps or an invasive experience.  

"By incorporating mobile wallets, brands gain broader customer reach on mobile," Ms. Chan said. "Up until now, brands were only able to reach their best customers on mobile via their branded app or apps. 

"However, this left a significant customer base that brands did not communicate with on mobile," she said. "By using mobile wallets, brands can send reminders, update personalized content, send special offers, etc. all without downloading an app. 

"Additionally, mobile wallets can be used as an ongoing engagement channel. Mobile wallets can not only be continuously updated, but can send timely notifications as well, making it an ideal mobile engagement channel."