Friday, October 16, 2009

KangoGift’s Krazy Week

It’s been a bit nutty at KangoGift this week. Of course, we just launched last weekend, so we’re still on pins and needles about everything with our service working perfectly. Happy to report that so far, so good!

And we have some sweet news to share – sweet yet tart, come to think of it. This week, berryline agreed come on board as a KangoGift partner. If you haven’t had berryline frozen yogurt, you haven’t really experienced frozen yogurt! It is truly the best frozen yogurt I’ve had. Crazy, exotic flavors that are in constant rotation – Papaya, Nutella, Guava and Lychee to name a few. And a little cool tidbit on beryline: It was founded by an MIT post-doc science student. He tired of the academic routine and opted for fro-yo. Very cool guy, so it’s great to partner with him.

OK, so we’ve got berryline on board, and we should have their stuff available for purchase within the next few days. But then, on Wednesday, we get featured on a trendspotting site called Springwise. Headline title: Instant local gifts via text message. Something a bit wacky about this: Springwise is located out of Amsterdam! International media coverage! Anyhow, from that headline, we start getting some folks tweeting about us and blogging about us. And on top of that, we’ve had a handful of retailers from around the country contact us about trying to partner and offer their products as KangoGifts.

All very exciting stuff, and our heads are spinning a bit. We’ll see where it all goes.

OK, but enough about us. Here’s what we can offer YOU! We’re going to be down on the Charles River at the Head of the Charles Regatta on Saturday afternoon. We’ll be in our orange KangoGift t-shirts. If you see one of us, stop us! Then demand we give you one of our promo cards – because we’re giving out one heck of a good deal. Not gonna tell you what it is; we want it to be a good surprise for you and your friends.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Wow, what a weekend...

KangoGift launched! We’re for real now.

The site went live on Saturday, and we had our first “marketing” event on Sunday – at Oktoberfest in Harvard Square. (and by the way, if you’ve never been to the Cambridge Oktoberfest, you gotta try it sometime in your life – if for no other reason than the parade)

So the small Kango team of friends and family set up shop under a tent right in the Square, and we encouraged the passerby to come “spin to win” on our wheel of gifts. We ended up giving away close to 400 gifts (mostly coffee and cookies) – delivered to people’s mobile phones. One of the really cool things was sending the KangoGifts from the laptops we had set up at the tent, then seeing them arrive on people's phones within seconds (so-called “old” technology still kind of blows you away sometimes). Then those same folks either marched on over to our partners to redeem their gifts, or they squirreled them away on their mobile phones for a rainy day.

People seemed to really like the whole KangoGift idea. We were even asked to send our business plan out to some folks who stopped by (um… better get going on that).

We want to offer a special thanks to Finale, who did a great job handling all the gift recipients we sent their way. If you’ve never been to Finale, you have to go and just ogle at their desserts; they’re like little pieces of sweet, buttery artwork.

All said, it was terrific launch weekend for KangoGift. If you got a KangoGift or have given a KangoGift, please let us know about the experience. We want to make this thing as good as we can make it!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Pulling Back the Covers

This is a genuinely exciting weekend for us here at KangoGift HQ. This weekend we’re pulling back the covers on a service we’ve been developing for the past few months.

The name of our new company is KangoGift, and what we’re doing is offering a new way for folks to give gifts to one another. The concept is actually pretty simple, and here’s how it works:

  1. You go to and buy a gift for a friend
  2. You give us your friend’s mobile phone number, and we deliver a text message telling your friend that you bought him or her a present.
  3. Your friend can go and redeem that gift at one of our partners’ stores.

We think it’s pretty cool, and we’re hoping you think it’s cool, too.

We have dreams of one day having retail partners all over the country (all over the world?). Imagine being able to buy your sister in San Diego a Sundae, or your buddy in Boulder a burrito. Within minutes, people thousands of miles away could be enjoying gifts you’ve gotten them.

But for now, we’re launching in our neighborhood – Harvard Square. We’re really psyched that we’ve singed on a handful of awesome partners:

Finale Desserterie & Bakery: They create sensational dessert experiences

Petali Flower: They have a timeless and memorable style

Daedalus: 21st Century version of a Joycean pub

Trata: Not just pizza – an extended menu and beers from around the world

If you’ve got a friend who lives, works and goes to Harvard Square, you can get them a gift from anyone of those spots, and we’ll deliver it to their cell phone instantly.

Our official launch is at Oktoberfest in Harvard Square on Sunday. It’s our coming out party. And to celebrate, we’ll be giving away gifts (on us) to show folks how it all works.

Like I said, we think the idea is pretty cool. But more importantly, what do you think of it?

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Oktoberfest and KangoGift - Harvard Square October 11

If you live in or near Boston, we encourage you to stop by Oktoberfest which will be held Sunday October 11, in Harvard Square.

KangoGift will have a tent right in the midst of all the action and we would love for you to stop by and say hello.

We have even set aside some special gifts for our "blog friends," so please be sure to pay us a visit on the 11th!