Ben Lerer’s ever-growing startup Thrillist began as a witty email city guide. Over the past year, a subset of its business, Thrillist Rewards, has exploded.
Thrillist Rewards finds local deals for members that can be purchased, much like Groupon for a hip crowd.
It’s become such an important part of Thrillist’s revenue stream that Thrillist Rewards is getting its own iPhone and Android app.
The Thrillist Rewards app launched today. It sends weekly alerts to users about local deals. Right now it’s more like Groupon than Foursquare; deals can be purchased through the app and there’s no geolocation feature.
Next month Thrillist will be adding geolocation. Then the app will serve location-based reminders. When a user purchases a reward and walks near the venue, the Thrillist app will send an alert encouraging the user to redeem it.
Thrillist already has an iPhone and Android app, so the fact that it rolled out an entirely new app for Rewards shows what a money maker local deals are for the business.
“Thrillist Rewards, while a piece of the broader Thrillist strategy, is a powerful brand unto itself, with its own unique design language and content,” said a Thrillist spokesperson. “So for launch, we thought it would better promote the brand to give it its own unique environment.”