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Social Mobile Payments

by Meghann on April 12, 2012

We survived! The 2012 Social Mobile Payments Conference has come to an end and so far the reviews are good! Success!

For those of you who were curious…. “Social Mobile Payments” is the broad term used to describe the process of accepting payments via your smartphone either by app, swipe card, etc. For instance, let’s say you purchase food from a food truck and pay via an app on your cellphone that is connected to your PayPal account and send money directly to the food truck – that was a mobile payment. (I actually did this in Austin)

Of course – as I learned this week – that is just the beginning. Mobile payments via cash systems that are directly connected to your smartphone are HUGE in Europe and slowly growing over here. Yesterday the marketing director for Paypal shared new trends they’re projecting for their own future in the space (picture using your PayPal account to pay in store using the debit/credit card machine) and today we heard from the founder of Dwolla who claimed that credit cards are dying a slow death and mobile cash payments are the future.

There was also an interesting session from CSI – the company, not crime scene investigation – which markets a product that allows employers to send virtual one time use credit card numbers to employees to purchase airline tickets, office supplies, etc., and Jonathan Stark spoke yesterday about his experience with ‘Jonathan’s Card‘ where he created a pay-it-forward system with a Starbucks Rewards card that encouraged coffee drinkers around the US to use the card to buy a drink, but also encouraged them to add funds to the card to keep the movement flowing. Over the course of a month the card raised over $8,000 and paid for 900 coffee drinks before Starbucks shut the card down. The effort was only made possible because of a screen shot Jonathan grabbed of his card and shared with the web. The screen shot of the card allowed Starbucks fans to show the the card via their smart phone to pay for the drink with the pay-it-forward funds.

Like I said, interesting stuff. I only wish I had heard more from some of the European speakers, I heard this sessions were crazy interesting as well since it’s a completely different market over there!

The Social Mobile Payments Conference was the brainchild of the husband/wife team: Bruce and Deb Burke.


(we’re missing Bruce in the photo!)

They only brought me in a couple of months ago to handle coordinating the sponsors, registration, and the hotel, but they were the true rockstars behind the conference. Three cheers to Bruce and Deb for a successful first show!!

Ok. On with the food!


I had the last 1/3 of a Clif bar around 11 to hold me over until lunch.


Lunch was the Portofino Platter Buffet, which – shhhhh – was part of the “Fit and Light” catering menu.


That wasn’t on purpose. The buffet option was just the best deal for what we got, but “healthy” or not, this food was good. The majority of the attendees raved about the buffet and even went back for seconds. They appreciated the change from the normal sandwich bar and – when they’re happy – we’re happy.

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I agree – the food was really, really good. If you’re planning a conference in the Orlando area -may I suggest the Marriot Orlando World Center? Not only was the food good, but the customer service we received through the event was top notch AND the rates were all fairly competitive. They won me over.




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I tried a little bit of everything. I had high hopes for the mini cannoli, but it was too much shell and not enough filling! Don’t they know the filling is the best part?


Afternoon snacks included the rest of the bag of pretzels and a mini cheeseburger one of the neighboring events I befriended shared with me from their reception.

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I left the hotel around 6:00, but wasn’t terribly hungry when I arrived home in Tampa.


I made a light dinner that consisted of a peanut butter, cherry, and chocolate protein smoothie


And a bowl of edamame that I shared with Derek.


It feels good to be home! It feels even better knowing I don’t have to go anywhere else for at least another week. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Good Night!

*I updated the wedding page today! Check out the story behind choosing my bridesmaids!*

1 Cait's Plate April 12, 2012 at 10:37 pm

That buffet looks SO good. Totally worth any splurge it might’ve been!

Congrats on making it through – enjoy the wonder that is your own bed tonight ๐Ÿ™‚
Cait’s Plate recently posted..Rice Barn & Yoga

2 Sana April 12, 2012 at 11:08 pm

I gave a fudge seller my credit card at a fair and he used his iphone to side it through. It was soooo coool ๐Ÿ™‚
Sana recently posted..I Vlog My Life

3 Carrie April 13, 2012 at 12:43 am

Welcome back! I’ve never used mobile payments, but I’m guessing that’s probably the way of the future.
Carrie recently posted..Three Things Thursday

4 Hope @ With A Side Of Hope April 13, 2012 at 7:44 am

Wow, all of that food looks great! The best part is that it was healthy too! ๐Ÿ™‚
Hope @ With A Side Of Hope recently posted..Friday the 13th!โ€ฆ

5 Emily N April 13, 2012 at 8:16 am

In the industry I work in (payments & prepaid) this is a huge deal. Dwolla is one of the many apps that our employees have downloaded to play with and examine to see how we can use it or the idea of it for our own products. I hope you learned a lot!
Emily N recently posted..Running Slacker

6 Kristen @ notsodomesticated April 13, 2012 at 8:58 am

Wow, that’s the nicest spread at a conference I’ve ever seen! Yum!!
Kristen @ notsodomesticated recently posted..The perfect springtime dessert.

7 kath April 13, 2012 at 9:28 am

How cool you planned a conference for them! Fun consulting job ๐Ÿ™‚
kath recently posted..Room With A View

8 Katie @ Peace Love and Oats April 13, 2012 at 9:39 am

I love the idea of paying for things with my phone since I always have it on me!
Katie @ Peace Love and Oats recently posted..Do You Know Me?

9 Theresa @ ActiveEggplant April 13, 2012 at 11:42 am

The Home Depot in Bradenton actually has the option to pay via PayPal now at their registers. I havent used it, but it’s definitely an option that’s out there now!
Theresa @ ActiveEggplant recently posted..Bike MS: Why Iโ€™m Riding

10 Megan April 13, 2012 at 1:17 pm

The mobile payment sounds fascinating. I know Starbucks already does it with their iPhone app for card members.

But what I’m really fascinated by is that pumpkin pie clif bar! I have never been able to find them when they come out – where did you get it?!
Megan recently posted..DM2K12

11 Army Amy* April 13, 2012 at 5:29 pm

I have yet to make oe see someone make a mobile payment. Sounds cool though.*
Army Amy* recently posted..Goooooooooals

12 Debbie April 15, 2012 at 6:25 pm

Great post. A huge thank you Meghann for helping its make the conference a success. We could not have done it with out you.

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