Social Value: The Aerobics Game


The Social Value Game is a not a social currency exchange, it is a social value exchange. The objective of the game is to convert financial value into social value, then create new value, tax-free and frictionless in any number of social currencies, then convert it back to financial currency + social value. The strategy is to identify and leverage an existing high value social resource and organize a community of people and other vendors around that resource.

Consider the following example:

The Aerobics Instructor Game

Suppose that a popular aerobics instructor has 20 students and charges 40 dollars for an 8 week class. The local health food store will place 10% coupon on store purchases against the 40 dollar tuition for the duration of the class. If the student bought 400 dollars worth of food from the health food store in 8 weeks, their tuition for the aerobics course would be free.  If they spend more, then the aerobics instructor is paid more.  The health food store already spends 10% of sales on advertising so they are largely agnostic to the source of the impression.

It is in the instructor’s best interest to enroll people who are likely to spend the most at the store.  Given this arrangement, a sporting goods store may offer a similar coupon against tuition as would an Indian Restaurant, or even a health insurer.

The health food store gains loyal repeat customers without advertising

The aerobics instructor may maximize her profits by enrolling a health food chef or a caterer, a wedding planner, or people with large families.  She may negotiate a services with a hotel enrolling guests while extending food discounts to the restaurant. If she’s successful, event pictures pop-up on Facebook and deals appear on Twitter.  The aerobics instructor becomes knowledgeable about the products and the community and talks about them with her friends.

The Social Value Index

The Social Value Index compares the cost/benefit of the non-integrated advertising model with the cost/benefit of the socially integrated model of community benefit.  The Social Value Index rewards this store for enabling entrepreneurs in exchange for loyal repeat customers.  The Social Value Index favors this instructor for being knowledgeable and supportive of her community and available health resources. The Social Value Index rewards the network of secondary vendors who align with the aerobics instructor and who may likewise offer electronic coupons.

The coupon constitutes full disclosure therefore, it is clearly not in the best social interest of the aerobics instructor to accept coupons for, say, cigarettes. It is not in her best interest to cheat since her social value would be punished if her actions were found to be fraudulent.  The Social Value Index rewards Aerobics students for participating in socially redeeming activities. The alternative is for the Health Food store to drop a lot of money on TV commercials, Google Ad Sense, and Social Media Spam.

The Social Value Theory: 80% of the economy is social value, 20% is financial value

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